The Fascinating History of the Onesie
Our favorite one-piece garment spawned different versions before it became the adorable onesie that we love today. Onesies look cute and playful but its history was rich and full of interesting facts. The war-torn era gave rise to the outfit which we are crazy about.
The onesie was brought into existence because of necessity. It was never just a fashion statement before, onesies were created to survive.
Let’s have a trip down the memory lane. Shall we? It was believed that onesies came into view in the 17th century, it was a just a short stint then it resurfaced in the late 1800s. Moving forward to the pre-war era, one of the most pivotal events that paved the way of onesies’ recognition was when Sir Winston Churchill donned the one-piece apparel. The noble statesman was never shy of wearing his onesies even in formal events. He coined the term “siren suit”. It is not a secret that he adores onesies, in fact, he argued that this type of garment is perfect during air-raid drills. He also served in the military and he knew that his siren suits were easy to slip on and undeniably convenient.
Between the year 1930s and the war-riddled years of 1940s, onesies became one of the most in-demand types of clothing. The war left a nation on the verge of a crisis. Apparently, Great Britain took a hard beating even after the war has ended. The aftermath was greatly felt through shortage in supply. From food and gas, up to the fabric for clothes, everything was distributed via a rationing system. The victims were devastated and the government tried everything in their power to adhere to the system and conserve the resources. The citizens realized that these are the repercussions and they need to be resourceful to last. The women, most especially, lamented the scarcity but were forced to make do of that they have on hand. Tents, curtains, and bedsheets were turned into clothes. The one-piece suit became an instant hit for its practicality and suitability. The women of this era turned their makeshift creations in different variations and styles, their works looked a lot better than Sir Winston’s Churchill’s siren suit.
Aside from the siren suit, boiler suit is its other spin-off. Boiler suits were worn by mechanics and bricklayers. In addition to this, another one-piece garment emerged in Utica, New York. Union suit looks a lot like siren suits and was initially intended for women. By the 20th century, union suits were predominantly a staple in a working men’s closet. In 1998, Steve Pandi of Jumpin Jammerz wore a onesie in one of his performances and this act kickstarted the trend. The cheeky and quirky costume charmed the mainstream audience.
These onesie precursors were not designed to be flashy and trendy. Their task du jour is to be useful and not fashionable. They may not look pleasing to the eyes but their practicality made these suits relevant until today. With the different posh and trendy innovations on the onesie’s appearance, it became a worldwide trend since 2011. Onesies appealed to the younger generations and the kids-at-heart. It even reached the realm of the celebrities and fascinated the consciousness of the stars. Actors, singers and significant people who bear a certain clout were snapped in their onesies. Their influences flood our social media feeds daily. Also, these fashion icons and the army of fashion bloggers pushed the apparel’s popularity to its maximum height leaving no stone unturned. The onesie is the spawn of comfort and convenience. And with all of the chaos and the complexities of the world today, these two states are where we want to be right now.