Belgian Mail Order Catalogs and Advertisements with Boys Clothings: Language

Figure 1.--Here are a range of outfits for pre-school boys and girls in the ETE summer 1966 catalog. The gender is apparently indicatd by the illustration. It looks like gurls wore little dresses while boys wore romper outfits. There were different age ranges for each outfit, but the age covered on the age is pre-school children 1-5 years of age. These are not the French-style batboteuses, but the outdits seem to have romper pants or shorts that look lrather like briefs. The catalog is done in Flemish and French. The terms are not very help, the outfits are clled costume//kostuum which simply means costume or outfit. We also notice 'twee-stuks' which means two-piece.

One interesting aspect of Belgian catalogs and adverisemens in language as Belgians speak both Flemish and French. We believe that the language in ads was in the language used by the newspsper or magazine. We are less sure about catalogs. We see some published in both languages. This may have been the standard for mail order companies looking for as large a market as possible. Unfortunaley some of the terms used are not too helpful. The ETE ctalog describes a lot of outfits as costume/kostuumm. That diesen't tell us much anout the French/Flemish terms for these outfits. Hopefully our readers will provide us some insights here. A French reader tells ius, "After 1966 the French style barboteuse wasn't really fashionable any more except for verybyoung boys 1-2 years of ge. Since 1966 little boys 2-4 years were wearing the style of cistume/kostuum outfit depicted here in the Belgian catalog instead rompers (figure 1). Notice both pink and blue-sky were in fashion for boy. About the terms,in French one says 'Ensemble' when describing play outfits. Costume is used for Sunday dress-up suit. Into French we also say 'Petit costume' In France durung 1959-70, the costume models offered on this catalog page were called "Costume bloomer". TOf course the two langauages also meant that Belgians had access to both Dutch and French catlogs and we also believe that German catalogs have been used. There are also Flemish/Dutch terms of interest. A Dutch reader tells u, "'Twee-stuks' means two piece. In other words the outfit consists of two parts. There are differences between Flemish and Dutch. In the Netherlands they would say 'tweedelig' instead of 'twee-stuks'. We also notice that the word 'kleedje' is being used in the catalogue. That means a small dress for little girls. Nobody in Holland would call a dress that way. That is a 'jurk' in Dutch. In German it is a kleid."


Navigate the Boys' Historical Clothing catalog/magazine pages:
[Return to the Main Belgian mail order page]
[Main photo/publishing page] [Store catalogs] [Fashion magazines]

Navigate the Boys' Historical Clothing Web Site:
[Introduction] [Activities] [Bibliographies] [Biographies] [Chronology] [Clothing styles] [Countries]
[Contributions] [FAQs] [Glossaries] [Images] [Links] [Registration] [Tools]
[Boys' Clothing Home]

Navigate the Boys' Historical Clothing Web Site:
[Sailor hats]
[Rompers] [Tunics] [Smocks] [Pinafores] [Sailor suits]
[Eton suits] [Suits] [Pants] [Hosiery] [Footwear]

Created: 7:03 AM 10/24/2014
Last updated: 7:51 PM 10/24/2014