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Historical Boys Clothes

The transition from Buster Brown suits and floppy bows, Fauntleroy suits, kilts, and dressy short pants to casual blue jeans and baggy trousers is an interesting study in social history. The modern boy would hardly recognize his counterpart of 100 years ago who might find himself in a lace collar and velvet short pants, sailor suits, or kilts. Parents at the time dressed formally and insisted that their children also dress smartly. Gradually styles changed in the mid 20th Century to more realistic short pants and knickers before the modern incarnation of baggy jeans and sweatshirts.

Parents, especially mothers, used to choose their son's clothing and until he was quite old he had little say in the matter. Children, especially well off children, were often dressed in fancy, formal clothes, even for play. The modern child would find children's dress of a century ago highly restrictive. It would certainly inhibit a child who wanted to enjoy the playground in the comtemporary scene. The modern child, even very young children have a great deal of say in how they dress, often demanding designer clothing. Informal styles are in vogue with children rarely dressing up and often under duress.

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