The dress habits for many Americans have changed significantly over the years. During the 1950’s and 1960’s men and women would dress up when going out publicly. They would wear clothing that was deemed acceptable for the occasion with women in dresses and men in suits or nice pants, button down shirts and, in many cases, ties. Schools had dress codes for children which included dresses for girls and nice pants and shirts for boys.
Advent Of Casual Dress
As time passed and people became interested in many outside activities especially sports, a new genre of clothing began to take shape with the public and it was called casual wear. It became the clothing for weekend wear including such things as sporting events. The primary uniform was blue jeans and the T-shirts. Any athletic event from football games to basketball to hockey had most viewers in this outfit.
The T-shirt (tee) got its name from its “T" design with a body and sleeves that can be either short or long. The neck is round with no collar. Variations have also developed with v-necks, collars and buttons. The T-shirt is generally made of soft fabric such as cotton.
A movie of the 1950’s starring Marlon Brando and called A Streetcar Named Desire lifted the T-Shirt to the status of a fashionable, outer-wear garment.
Printing On T-Shirts
In the 1950’s companies began selling licenses for their products to be used on T-shirts. Some of the first licensed products were Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse. During the 1960’s various forms of printing emerged such as tie-dyeing and screen printing. Messages printed on the t-shirts became popular too especially those having some type of political statement such as protests against the Vietnam War.
As a result, the T-shirt has taken on a life of its own. The entire family has drawers full of different colors and designs regardless of age, gender or size. Retailers have entire departments of T-shirts, many of which are unisex in design.
T-shirts For All Occasions
Today people have T-shirts for many occasions in daily life. In sports, the name of a favorite athlete from a specific sports team is worn at the game and the T-shirt will be in the team’s colors. T-shirts are worn with the logo of one’s high school, college or university. Companies sponsor employee events and the corporate T-shirt is worn by all participants.
A popular idea for many people is to design their own T-shirt. The screen printing process allows this concept to be done easily and inexpensively. T-shirt printing businesses are everywhere. People even started printing businesses in their basements and have made a fairly good profit. It will probably be a long time before the popularity of the T-shirt subsides.
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