Sailor Suits: Germany--Colors

Figure 1.-- This photo showing a group of German kids in sailor suits. It is undated, but we would guess the very early-1920s. Notice the variety of caps and hats: sailor caps, a school cap, and straw hats. The boy on the extreme right wears a brown tunic suit with belt and detachable Eton-style white collar. They all seem to be in wearing black or dark blue long stockings. The age range is perhaps 3-10 years old. n Notice that the sailor outfits are all done in blue and white. The photo has been colorized which is not the same as an actual color photograph. We doubt of the colorists actually saw what the children were wearing. We believe, however, that the colors chosen are a fairly accurate representation of the colors being used for sailor suits at the time.

German boys commonly wore blue or white sailor suits, usually on a seasonal basis. There were other colors, but the black-and-white photography of the day makes this very difficult to assess. And unlike the United States, we do not have much catalog information from Germany for color information. Various blue shades were by far the most important. After the turn-of-the-century mixing colors, usually a white middy blouse with blue pants. The blues ranged from light blue for summer to dark blue or black for winter. Variously colored suits may have been used for play, but proper sailor suits were almost always blue or white. The suits were usually solid colors, but some mostly summer suits were stripped. These stried suits appear to have been especially popular in Germay. The suits were most commonly white with blue stripes, but there were other combinations as well.


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Created: 8:13 PM 1/19/2011
Last updated: 8:13 PM 1/19/2011