HSF #2 — Innovation – Raglan Sleeve

This post introduced some of the technological innovations that appear in Father Zantus’s turtleneck.  This post will explore Raglan Sleeves.

The most notable characteristic of Raglan sleeves, are that they attack to the neck of the shirt, rather than at the shoulder.  Shirts with Raglan sleeves have no shoulder seam, because the front and back pieces attach to the sleeve. (Oblig Wikipedia link).

The origin story of the raglan sleeve can be found here, among other places.  The super short version:  Lord Raglan lost his arm in the mid 1815s.  His tailor made him a custom coat with this new style of sleeve that would be easier for him to put on and take off.  I was half expecting to find references to earlier raglan sleeves, on the assumptions that, like Mathematical Theorems, sleeves are never named for their originator.  (Stigler’s law). I didn’t find any, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist.

Almost-raglan spencer

Early 19th century spencer, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

I did, however find some “so close, yet so far” examples.  These both come from the early 19th century, the same period where Raglan lost his arm.  This spencer (the tiny little jacket) and dress are have so little in the way of shoulders, that the sleeves attach to a couple of inches of fabric around the neckline.  They didn’t make that final step of eliminating the neck band altogether.

Almost raglan sleeve dress

Dress, 1810-1915, also from The Met.

 

Advertisements

3 thoughts on “HSF #2 — Innovation – Raglan Sleeve

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s