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The Utility Clothing Scheme

Geraldine Howell

Source: Wartime Fashion. From Haute Couture to Homemade, 1939–1945 2012

Book chapter


Nan H. Mutnick

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. The United States and Canada 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Before the twentieth century, hosiery had seldom enjoyed the fashion limelight with other accessories of dress. During the nineteenth century, hosiery was made from cotton, silk, or very fine wool. Those living in the colder climates, such as northern Canada, would have used heavier-weight wool for warmth. Colors for women were dictated by fashion, sometimes matching the dress, petticoat, or shoes. Synthetic dyes, developed from a coal-tar derivative in 1856, allowed for modern, sharp, and bright


Michiel Scheffer

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The origin of synthetic fibers goes back to the development of organic chemistry in the second half of the nineteenth century. The objective was to develop an economical, reliable alternative for silk. The development of rayon, acetate, polyamides, and polyesters all had that aim. Artificial silk was available on an industrial scale from 1920 onward, mainly for stockings and underwear. World War II boosted the production of artificial fibers, since the war interrupted wool and cotton supply to Ge

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