Sometimes when I go on the hunt for vintage clothing, a theme appears. Last week the theme was bloomers. I first spotted this gymsuit with bloomers. It has a nifty feature.
How about that! Convenient, but I’m betting the girl who had to wear this suit hated it, and especially hated the drop bottom.
That girl was Margo Kellow. The gymsuit was made a a company that is new to me, Pennco, or the Pennsylvania Apparel Company.
No sooner had I spotted Margo’s green suit than I saw these big black bloomers flapping in the wind. I’m pretty sure that the vendor thought they were funny, and she seemed genuinely surprised when I asked the price. The other shoppers then began to have a few laughs at my expense.
No matter, as I know a great pair of bloomers when I see them. These are very long, and quite old, probably Edwardian. Note the use of an overlock stitch. Yes, the overlock was used this early, having been invented in the 1880s.
It’s very possible that these bloomers once had an attached blouse, as the waist band stitching has been removed.
It was not all gym attire, however. This is an apron made in the shape of bloomers, which mirror the woman in the print.
When I returned home, a package was waiting. In it was yet another pair of bloomers, these a bit later than the top pair. I got these from my new favorite etsy shop, Poor Little Robin. Again, we are lucky to have the name of its original owner, Martha Wilson.
All these bloomers got me to thinking about my next research project. I’m getting a pretty good selection of gymsuits, and so I’m going to be working on a timeline of the changes made in girls’ gym attire over the years. Hopefully I will have enough information to write a paper for presentation at Costume Society, but if not, I can still post my findings here.
Later on I may be begging for help in the form of your family photos.