Next was a full length underskirt, then my normal clothes. The layers of the vest and liberty bodice and underskirt were to keep me warm as I was prone to chest infections. We didn't have central heating just a coal fire so our houses were cold especially trying to get dressed for school in the morning, it was freezing.
I have now discovered that the liberty bodice was made to replace corsets and not so restrictive for the woman of the day, there was also little ties on the bottom for suspenders. Why then were ones for children so awful?
When I was about twelve years old my mum took me to Davidsons, purveyor of undergarments since the 1800's to be measured for my first bra. Can you imagine how embarrassing that was? The shop wasn't really the browsing kind, all their underwear were kept in drawers with little see through fronts and you had to be attended to by an assistant.
They were called training bras and we picked a Berlie Teenform bra with briefs
and a waist underskirt to match. It was white with tiny blue flowers and it was NOT cotton and it was the first time I was allowed to wear a waist underskirt.
I was thrilled with it and knew I had become a teenager.
At secondary school we wore navy knickers for PE and to play hockey outside in the freezing cold where everyone could see us. We had to buy them at the Co-op or a specialised schoolwear shop. Mine were about two sizes too big (so they would last) Those knickers were the work of the devil and I hated them. The school hockey team wore short pleated skirts so why we couldn't wear them in class time I don't know, I think the teachers were just plain sadistic.
I always wanted to wear stockings like my mum did with seams up the back of the legs. When my friends and I played dress up we borrowed our mum's stockings and held them up with elastic bands. Our mums wore suspenders to keep their stocking up and granny used elastic garters. I did get my own pantee belt with suspenders eventually but just as that happened pantyhose appeared.
Pantyhose were the invention of Allen Gant of Glen Raven Mills in North Carolina USA. They were invented in 1959 but it was the sixties before they came to the UK and we eventually called them tights. I imagine they must have been far more comfortable for women to wear and I don't think we could have worn our skirts so short if we had had to wear suspenders.
In the seventies I remember French Knickers and Camisole tops. The Cami knickers were silky and very exotic compare to the cotton pants of childhood but were not very comfortable when wearing trousers.
My mum and hers sisters found it hard to part with their corsets and pantee belts they were so used to them. I think it was me who eventually persuaded my mum that she didn't need to wear them.
Men didn't escape some horrendous fashion mistakes. During the seventies men were wearing Matching
multi-coloured vests and Y fronts. Some even had psychedelic designs on them and looked like all in one playsuits.
The UK decided to experiment with time from 1968 until 1971. In the UK in1968 the clocks were put forward as usual in the spring but did not put the clocks back in Autumn, they called it British Standard Time. I can remember walking to school in the dark. At first it was very exciting and parents who didn't usually walk their children to school were having to do so, there was a kind of party atmosphere and we all thought we were so brave.
We were given fluorescent armbands to wear and we bought sticky bright orange strips to stick on our schoolbags. After the first year we were getting a bit fed up with it and the excitement had worn off.
Fours years later we changed back to Greenwich Mean Time, putting the clocks back one hour in autumn and forward one hour in the spring. The experiment had neither been a success or a failure as they were pros and cons to both times.
In 1976 "Under The Moon of Love" was a number one hit in the UK in for Showaddywaddy.
In 1964 "Under the Boardwalk was recorded by The Drifters.
In 1979 Midge Ure joined Ultravox. He was previously a member of the group Slick and Salvation, the group I danced to in Clouds in Glasgow
I'm sorry, Midge but I didn't like your music with Ultravox, so I'm finishing with a toe tapping, head bopping,
Under the Moon of Love.
Rosalind is reliving her Ato Z memories of the fifities and sixties at Writing in the Rain I wonder what she has for "U"