Like many pieces of the gentleman's wardrobe of today such as the chino or the white tee shirt, the World Wars have influenced the style and popularity of braces. Nevertheless, they have been around since older days. Are you interested in the story behind this practical piece of garment and the varieties of shades and patterns we carry them in? Click to find out more.
Perhaps one of the most useful yet stylish accessories a man can wear - a fine pair of braces, of British produce if possible. But how did this item evolve from a more practical clothing solution to a piece of statement wear? Let us guide you through the history of braces, or as our American friends refer to them, suspenders.
The exact moment in history that men started wearing braces is unclear, although the invention of the braces as we know them today seems to have taken place in early nineteenth-century England, thanks to a gentleman that goes by the name of Albert Thurston. Throughout the century, they gained popularity, being worn universally and in any setting, much like belts are worn nowadays. Samuel Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, received the first patent for braces in the USA. In the twentieth-century military, and especially amongst the American troops during the Second World War, men became accustomed to wearing belts with their uniform, and this trend made its way to regular fashion. This made brace-wearers less common, although admirers of British formal wear have remained to wear them.
For a long time, braces were looked at as pieces of underwear, preferably concealed beneath a jacket and never to be seen in public. Nowadays, flaunting around with a brightly-coloured pair of braces exudes confidence and a certain form of sartorial know-how, thanks to figures like 'Wall Street' protagonist Gordon Gekko and American TV-host Larry King.
Albert Thurston is still undoubtedly the best and most quintessential maker of braces available. We carry a wide collection of their braces, varying in pattern and colouring. Multiple materials, like bamboo, barathea fabric and silk belong to the options. Naturally, only the bottom part of the Y-shape is elastic, which gives enough stretch for bending and sitting. Check out our entire Albert Thurston braces collection!