Mail Order Catalogs and Advertisements with Boys Clothings: Garment Trends

Figure 1.--A Swiss reader sent us this image, but is unsure where it came from. We believe it is an advertisement for tights, probably frfom Germzany or Switzerland. It looks modern, but could be ant time from the 2000s or very early-2010s. A reader says it is ffrom 2000. We are not sure what it says in the girl's sweater. We do not know the brand. In Germany and Switzerland both boys and girls continue to wear tights under the age of 10 years. We have found fairly recent images of a similar kind in Russia (children's tights worn by both genders). We don't see the boy in the illustration wearng any additional pants, but I suspect this is just because the advertiser wished to illustrate the tights fully. They would probably be worn as play clothes at home (maybe without pants) and outside with short trousers. We see that convention in Russia, we are less sure about Germany and Switzerland. The color brown is pretty much the same shade as boys' long stockings worn during the 1950s, for examples. These kids seem to about 8-10 years old.

Mail order catalogs offer a wealth of details about specific garments. This allows these styles to be followed over time as well as the ability to compare trends in different countries. We are adding new catalog and advertisement pages all the time. These pages are being added to the mail order country pages. We eventually want to cross index these pages here by garment type. This will permit readers to assess fashion trends across countries and over time periods. That is, however, an enormous task and will take some time before we begin to work on this task as many other tasks are in progress.

Skirted Garments


Casual Clothes



Children have worn a wide range of hosiery types over time and seasonally or for economic reasons gone barefoot. The hosiery types have varied from modern sports socks that do not show above the shoe to long stockings and tights which cover the legs. Long stickings went out of style in the 1950s, except for the Communist countries where they were worn longer--an example of the systems lack of response to consumer demand. They were replaved by tights. The advertisement here is a good example (figure 1). And there were all kinds of lengths in between, including ankle socks, three-quarter socks, and knee socks. The popularity of these different types have varied greatly over time and among countries.


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Created: December 6, 2002
Last updated: 6:08 PM 6/23/2011