Friday, 6 April 2012

Three Piece Suits

The Victorians called matching trousers and coats `dittoes`. Sometimes the vest matched too but the three piece suit seems to have become frequently adopted relatively late . It is interesting to compare these two Spy cartoons from 1904 and 1905 in which a white vest is sported with a suit in the first instance and a short black coat and cashmere striped trousers in the second. I sometimes wonder why the popularity of short black coats and cashmere stripes waned because, after all, it was possible to mix and match and even easily replace individual items; far more easily than with a three piece set of dittoes.

However, there is no reason why a light vest should not be paired up with a two piece suit or even substituted occasionally for a matching suit vest in a three piece suit.

Cyril Arthur Pearson, 1904, media mogul and founder of The Daily Express.

Major William Eden Evans Gordon, 1905.

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