Flashback: Braces-Attached Waistcoat

Posted on October 14, 2013


(Courtesy of Anthony Jordan)

(Courtesy of Anthony Jordan)

In my previous post I discussed the tab used by some waistcoats to keep them firmly attached to the trouser waistband.  Well, here’s a vintage variation that takes the concept to a whole other level: waistcoats that double as suspenders.

This invention rolled two accessories into one by providing the waistcoat with front tabs and rear straps that attached to the trousers’ suspender buttons in place of traditional braces.  Presumably the idea did not catch on because I have only ever seen two references to it, both from the 1930s.  That’s why I was quite surprised to come across a photo of just such a waistcoat recently at the vintage menswear forum The Fedora Lounge.  The owner, Anthony Jordan, graciously agreed to provide additional photos so the garment could be properly chronicled in the Guide’s virtual museum of formalwear.

1934, George W. Heller Inc.

1934 George W. Heller Inc. ad for a brace attachment that could be added to any of their backless waistcoats.

1936, F.R. Tripler & Co (UK)

1936 F.R. Tripler & Co. ad for an English full-dress waistcoat “with braces attached”.

(Courtesy of Anthony Jordan)

Reverse side of dress waistcoat by London shirtmakers Rendell & Son (also shown at top of page) with X-straps in back. (Courtesy of Anthony Jordan)

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