Saturday, August 13, 2011

Origin of Clip-on Suspenders

Suspender straps were originally designed to be attached to trousers with buttons. The 1897 Sears Roebuck & Co. Catalogue displays 2 pages of button-on braces. Button-on braces support the trousers evenly in the front and the rear. 

Nowadays, people also wear clip-on suspenders rather than button-on braces. One may ask the question: When were clip-on suspenders invented?
I decided to do some research on this topic - you may be surprised to find the answer. I perused vintage department store catalogues and searched vintage photographs from the late 1800s, during 1900s up to the current era. You may be surprised to learn that clip-on suspenders have been around since the early 1940’s. In fact, the 1943 Sears and Wards Catalog clearly displays 4 styles for clip-on suspenders. They came in a elastic plastic weave, and rayon webbing, as displayed below along side the button-on braces:

Therefore, clip-on suspenders have been around for more than 70 years. Buttons have held their place (pun intended) among clip-ons, and remain the preferred choice of brace wearers. Refer to previous blog post on this topic. However, there is a place for clip-on suspenders.

Clip-on suspenders work well when you are wanting to achieve a minimal, clean-cut look or to add a little extra dash of fun to an outfit.

Today, clip-on suspenders are everywhere in magazines and online. Many stores carry a wide variety of colors, styles, and designs. So go out there and wear some suspenders!

Discussion time:
  • Did you imagine that clip-on suspenders were invented in the 1940s?
  • When was the first time you wore clip-on suspenders?
  • Do you prefer to wear clip-on suspenders or button-on suspenders? Why? 

Note: all photos are used solely for non-commercial use and to illustrate braces in fashion. No plagiarism is intended.