The Treasure Hunt

vintage clothing at vintagetextile.com

#1676         $375

Petit point embroidered braces, c.1850

Shortly before 1800, braces were added to the gentleman's wardrobe to keep his under-breeches in place. Braces were a practical solution to the problem of unsightly bunching under the smooth outer trouser. The main difference between modern suspenders and braces is that the former hold up the pants, while the latter held up the under-breeches.

By the mid-19th century, braces had evolved into fancy hand-embroidered gift items, often worked by a young fiancé who could not admit that she knew about a gentleman's undergarments. Braces have survived in modern fashion as the suspenders that hold trousers up in place of a belt.

These wonderful braces are a special find! When you look at the fine petit point embroidery, you can just imagine the young lady doing the handwork, while thinking forbidden thoughts of her intended. The embroidery is worked on a canvas ground with mellow shades of silk floss. The backs and edge bindings are fashioned from ivory silk moiré. These braces would make a very special gift for the man in your life!

The condition is excellent. I could not find any problems.

The braces are 31 1/2" long and 2 1/8" wide.

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