** Polish boys clothes -- garments

Polish Boys' Clothes: Garments

Figure 1.--This portrait was taken in what looks like--Jarostow. (The letter before the last one 'o' is with dash - what you should read like 'oo' in foot). Jarostow is a small town." This boy with his straw hat and sandals looks to be dressed for a summer holiday. He has a white collar and bow which he wears with a kind of blouse and knickers. I'm not sure when this portrait was taken, but would estimte about 1900. Jarostow, if it is the town in Silesia, was part of German Empire.

We have very little information at this time on the garments worn by Polish boys. Polish boys wore many of the same fashions worn by other European boys. We note Polish boys wearing broad-brimmed sailor caps. Sailor suits seem to have been very popular despite the fact that ther was no Polish navy.Few details are avilable to HBC on destinctive Polish fashions or the popularity and styles of various garments. We have seen boys wearing cossock-inspired Russian blouses-- especially with folk costumes. As in other European countries, boys commonly wore short poants in Poland until the 1970s. Long stockings were worn until about the 1970s when tights became more popular.


Polish boys in the early 20th centiry wore wide-brimmed sailor hats. We do not know to what extent sailor caps were worn. Nor do we have infomation on other popular headwear syles in Poland.


Polish boys, like other Europen boys, commonly wore dresses until breching at about 4-5 years of age. We have, howver, few details about about this custom in Poland. We have no information about dress styles, conventions, and chronological trends. We do note one biography about Wojciech G�sienica Byrcyn, who for many years was the director of the Tatra National Park in Poland. A family photo in the book showed Wojciech as boy of about 4 years, wearing a dress. The photo must have been taken in the 1930s. [Author unknown]


HBC has very limited information on smocks in Poland. We do note that the Communists after World Wwar II mandated that school children where smocks which were called fartuszki.

Russian Blouses

We have seen boys wearing cossock-inspired Russian blouses-- especially with folk costumes.

Juvenile Suits

Sailor suits

As in the rest of Europe, the sailor suit was a popular fashion for boys in Poland during the late 19th century and early 20th century. This was true despite the fact that Poland was not an independent country until 1919 and had no navy.

Fauntleroy suits

We do not have much information on Poland and virtually none on Fauntleroy out fits in Poland. We have found a paintiung by Kazimierz Mordasewicz of the Jaroszynscy brothers (1912). The Fauntleroy suits worn during the Craze Era (1895-1905) involved large collar buttoning collars. Gere we see see an open collar, sleeceless versions. We see other open collars in the 1910s, mostly being worn by rich or aristocratic Europwan families. This is the only sleeveless example we have found.


We have little information about Polish boys' suits at this time. We have almost no historical information. As far as we can tell, Polish fashion trends in the 19th century were essentilly the same as those in Russia and Germany. After World war I when Poland became independent and the Russian Revolution isolated Russia, Germany became nore important. After World War II you again have both Russian and German (East Gerany) influences. A complicating factor is the shifting of borders and populations in the 20th century. Are archive show actual examples is, however, very limited at this time so we are unable to discrn avtual suit styles.


Polish boys after World War I when the country was created wore pants very similar to those worn in Germany. Kneepants were very common and short pants became increasingly common. Boys wore kneepants and short pants all year round, often wearing them with long stockings when the weather turned cold. Short pants were wrn both for play and when dressing up. After World War II short pants were still common, but gradually boys began wearing long pants more commonly. Short pants by the 1960s were becoming go be seen more as casual clothing for the Summer. A Polish reader writes, "Short pants were very popular during the Summer when I was growing up in Poland during the 1980s. The style then was very short cut shorts. Shorts are still very popular Summer wear in Poland. Now most boys in Poland wear shorts that are at or below the knee, just like the styles elsewhere in Europe.


Polish boys like German boys wore long stockings well after they went out of style in many other European countries. Polish readers inform HBC that tights were also common, although we do not know when they first appeared. As in East Germany, they appear to have replaced long stockings. Polish boys in the 1980s commonly wore tights. Tights continued to be widely worn by boys in the 1990s although perhaps not quite as commonly in the 1980s. A Polish reader writes, "I grew up in Poland in the 1980s. I have some memories of the clothes I and others wore. I remember wearing knee socks pretty often until about the age of 10 or maybe even longer and some other boys also wore knee socks especially younger boys. I had a strict mother that insisted that I wear knee socks in the cold weather and on special occasions. This was probably more than other mothers did, but other boys did wear knee socks too. They were most often gray kneesocks as I remember. Also while it was not too common a practice then some boys did wear tights in cold weather. I remember that I wore tights most of the Winter and so did my brother who was 2 years younger than me. I used to hate tights and never wanted to wear them, but there was no way getting around it with my mom. She made me wear tights often in the cold and even as a teenager. By then I had gotten used to them. Once again, by then not too many boys wore tights but some did, including me. They were effectve in keeping your legs warm."

Foot Wear

The image her shows a Polish boy wearing sandals. This is a very early image of a boy wearing open-toe sandals. This style seems very rare in early 20th century images.


We notice Polish boys wearing a variety of costumes. As in other countries, there are two basic types of costumes. One, is play costumes. In ex[ensive costumes that children might dress up for play. This was common in america. We don't see that too commonly in Poland, we think primarily because Poland was not a rich country amd many parents could not afford play costumes. Two, there were also elaborate costumes which could be quite expensive, They were not for play, but to have a portrait taken or for special occassions. I don't think these were studio costumes, but rather costumesthat were put together by families in comfortable circumstances. They commonly were related to Polish historical periods. We do not yet have many examples.


Author unknown. Byrcyn stra�nik Tatr (ISBN 8370733573).


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Created: March 2, 2003
Last updated: 12:51 AM 10/25/2016