Thursday, August 4, 2016

19th C. Bicycling Fashion Etiquette

In taking up cycling attire for women we wish first of all to launch a protest against those abominable modern cycling garments, the bloomers. Don't wear them! Don't make them! Don't have anything to do with them! ~ Polite society has always dictated the etiquette expected for fashion, especially for the newest trends and styles in outdoor activities.

For Women Who Wheel 

New York Sartorial Art Journal contains the following interesting remarks anent bicycle costumes for women:

In taking up cycling attire for women we wish first of all to launch a protest against those abominable modern cycling garments, the bloomers. Don't wear them! Don't make them! Don't have anything to do with them! For of all the monstrosities of this day, a woman with a tightly laced waist und with limbs encased in baggy bloomers is the worst. Skirts are made nowadays of such design and length as not to hinder the free movements of the riders' limbs, so on that score there is no reason for complaint. It is much better from an artistic point of view, for a woman to wear knickerbockers than the hideous bulging bloomers, which no woman who has good taste will wear.

The short skirts of last season would blow up when the wearer pedaled fast or coasted down hill, even though knickerbockers and leggings were worn underneath, which exposed the rider to some mortification. This, however, is done away with by the increased length worn today. Regarding accessories to women's cycling attire, there is not much in the way of novelty to chronicle. The fourteen-button, tan kid boots remain very popular, with now and then a high lace and a high French kid boot in evidence. Some women wear knickerbockers and golf stockings underneath their skirts, and some, in hot weather, wear low Oxford shoes, the high lace button boot being rather warm. Shirt waists will of course, be in vogue as soon as the warm weather strikes us, and the high-banded turndown collar, worn with a cotten tie, will be popular.

A new thing for women's use in cycling furnishings will be the riding stock, which will be used either with shirt waist or jacket. It will fold twice around the neck, like a man's riding stock, though it will tie in the form of a bow instead of an Ascot. The tie proper in both the women's and men's articles will be of a material to match tho shirt or shirt waist. In mentioning women's cycling hats we can only say that there is such a variety of headgear for cycling that it would be an impossible task to enumerate and describe all of them. It is enough to say that the Tam-o-Shanter and the Tourist form of hats, neatly trimmed, and of a color to match the suits worn, and a black straw sailor, will be proper and most effective. Almost any kind of a stout glove goes well for cycling, although there are varlous special designs of cycling gloves on the market. — San Francisco Examiner, 1896



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