If you’re new here, you’ve probably figured out that we’re all about the offbeat and wacky observances and holidays. If you’re a part of the old guard, then you know today’s another one of ’em. Today’s National Underwear Day 2021, and it got its’ start from online retailer Freshpair on this day back in 2003. (BTW, this isn’t an affiliate link, I promise!)
Underwear isn’t always something we talk about. We all wear it, or at least most of us do at some point or another. At the same time, there’s a bit of stigma surrounding it. Like for instance, does anyone remember Arthur, the TV show that airs on PBS? There was an episode where Arthur tore his pants right in the cafeteria, and then it happened to Buster.
However, in those instances, it was a wardrobe malfunction, so the stigma and shame is totally understandable. It’s happened to me before, and it sucked donkey balls.
But let’s rewind, and go back in time, so to speak. Underwear got its’ start as the loincloth (or the buttflap, as George called it in that awesome movie from the late 1990s) in antiquity, and in some societies, according to the Wikipedia article, it was the only thing worn. Variations of it came out as time marched on. However, since there wasn’t much mention of what women wore, I’d presume that it was something similar if I had to hazard a guess.
This is just my educated guess, so if you find this in a search for what women wore for underwear in antiquity, don’t quote me on it. Seriously.
As society shifted into the industrial age, cotton became a mass-produced good with the advent of new technologies, instead of the commodity it used to be. Thus, underwear could be had with a few cents instead of going to all the trouble to make it yourself.
Side note: I actually found patterns for underwear on eBay from the 1960s, and a pattern for period undies on someone’s website that you can download. So yes, making underwear yourself is still a thing.
Corset styles evolved, from the conical stays of the 1700s, to the straighter Regency-era styles, and the hourglass shapes that defined the Victorian and into the early Edwardian eras. All were worn with petticoats, and later on, what became known as bloomers.
Eventually those fell out of fashion after the 1920s, when the hip corset, paired with what amounts to a bralette today gained popularity. Corsets in the style of the turn of the century still existed, but those were popular among the older generations.
Underwear evolved from there to the numerous styles of bras and undies, from the briefs to the thongs (which I call butt floss), buttless briefs, and undies without the sides like what’s in that Wikipedia article.
For me, it was the multi-pack of briefs, worn to rags while I was at my heaviest, both my confirmed and my estimated heaviest. That’s what I was bought, and that’s what I wore. I won’t say how old I was when I bought a pair of butt floss for the first time, but I’ll say my age was in the double-digits, and I was out of elementary school.
I didn’t get the appeal. That thing was heinous on so many levels, and my plans to wear it to school went up in smoke that same night.
I still don’t get it, even in my 30s, after having lost the weight, so I guess my school-age self wasn’t as dense as she thought she was.
In the most recent installment of the Spammers’ Showcase series, one of the spammer comments came from someone asking about “plus size camisole sets.” Now, now, before anyone starts making any lame comments, just run with me here.
I mentioned how I followed a group of underwear enthusiasts and bloggers, and how they raved about brands that carried dozens of sizes in each style like Comexim, Avocado, Panache and its’ sub-brands, Freya, Claudette, Ewa Michalak, and Bravissimo’s house brand. I also mentioned that this was before I lost the weight this time around, in 2012. My weight loss was several years away at that time.
I’d been telling myself that when I lost the weight, then and only then would I buy anything beyond the alpha-sized sports bras and the multi-pack undies worn to rags I’d been given. But when I started following these bloggers and groups, the message from them was that I didn’t have to wait until I lost the weight. There was stuff out there in my size, and stuff that’s just as cool as what’s at a certain chain store in the mall at a similar price point to boot.
When I placed an order for two bras from the Cleo by Panache line, it was a huge leap. When I got them in the mail, it felt like a huge upgrade in my life from what I’d been in all those years, and it was all love from that moment on. I’ll still forever kick myself for not getting that neon green Cleo Lucy bra that was exclusive to Bravissimo at that time, though.
Bravissimo’s changed quite a bit since the last time I was able to order from there, but I noticed that they still carry the bra-size tank tops I’d had on my list at the time I found them. Those come in a substantial size range, and some sizes sell out quicker than others.
As I started to lose the weight this time around, the bras I’d gotten that didn’t quite fit before started fitting perfectly. Since bands in the size range I’m in ran small anyway, due to the amount of elastic used to make ’em, that turned out to be in my favor as I moved forward. The bands fit, or fit well enough to hold me over until I could go for the next size down, but the cups were a different story.
I’d lost some fullness to my boobs in my first attempt at losing weight, and unsurprisingly even more in this go-round. They did indeed get smaller, but they got smaller with the rest of me. I know for sure pregnancy’s gonna mess with ’em even more, but whatever. It’s nothing a good bra can’t fix anyway, haha.
Today’s been a slow day, and a tired one for me where I stayed in (for once), in my t-shirt and undies, holed up in my room working on this and getting ahead with some stuff for the day job. I’ll consider that my celebration for National Underwear Day, and call it a day.
Over to you, readers. How are you observing National Underwear Day? Sound off below.