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Clothing (also known as clothes, apparel, and attire) are items worn on the body. Typically, clothing is made of fabrics or
textile A textile is a flexible material made by creating an interlocking bundle of yarn Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable for use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, knitting, weaving, embroidery, ...

textile
s, but over time it has included garments made from
animal skin Skin is the layer of usually soft, flexible outer tissue covering the body of a vertebrate Vertebrates () comprise all species of animal Animals (also called Metazoa) are multicellular eukaryotic organisms that form the Kingdom (biol ...

animal skin
and other thin sheets of materials and natural products found in the environment, put together. The wearing of clothing is mostly restricted to
human being Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biological classification, classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A speci ...
s and is a feature of all human
societies A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction In social science, a social relation or social interaction is any relationship between two or more individuals. Social relations derived from individual agenc ...
. The amount and type of clothing worn depends on gender, body type, social factors, and geographic considerations. Garments cover the body,
footwear Footwear refers to garments worn on the feet, which typically serves the purpose of protective clothing, protection against adversities of the environment such as ground textures and temperature. Footwear in the manner of shoes therefore primarily ...

footwear
covers the feet,
gloves A glove is a garment A kanga, worn throughout the African Great Lakes region Clothing (also known as clothes, apparel and attire) are items worn on the body. Clothing is typically made of fabrics or textile A textile is a flexi ...

gloves
cover the hands, while
hats A hat is a head covering which is worn for various reasons, including protection against weather conditions, ceremonial reasons such as university graduation, religious reasons, safety, or as a fashion accessory. In the past, hats were an ind ...
and
headgear Headgear, headwear, or headdress is the name given to any element of clothing which is worn on one's Human head, head, including hats, helmets, turbans and many other types. Headgear is worn for many purposes, including protective clothing, pro ...

headgear
cover the head.
Eyewear Eyewear consists of items and accessories worn on or over the eyes, for fashion or adornment, protection against the environment, and to improve or enhance visual acuity. Image:Browline glasses.JPG, Browline glasses. Common forms of eyewear includ ...
and
jewelry Jewellery or jewelry consists of decorative items worn for personal adornment 150px, The principal adornment of these girls from the Bundu tribe in Sierra Leone is the adornment of bodies and faces with markings produced by the smearing on by ...

jewelry
are not generally considered items of clothing, but play an important role in
fashion Fashion is a form of self-expression and autonomy at a particular period and place and in a specific context, of clothing, footwear, Lifestyle (sociology), lifestyle, Fashion accessory, accessories, makeup, hairstyle, and body posture. The term i ...

fashion
and clothing as
costume Costume is the distinctive style of dress or cosmetic of an individual or group that reflects class, gender, profession, ethnicity, nationality, activity or epoch. In short costume is a cultural visual of the people. The term also was tradition ...

costume
. Other wearables are not always considered to be clothing despite belonging to an accepted class, such as
orthodontic headgear Orthodontic headgear is a type of orthodontic appliance typically attached to the patient's head with a strap or number of straps around the patient’s head or neck. From this, a force is transferred to the mouth/jaw(s) of the subject. Headgear ...

orthodontic headgear
, which is a medical appliance. The human body is not always
complete
complete
, and sometimes includes
prosthetic devices In medicine, a prosthesis (plural: prostheses; from Ancient Greek ''prosthesis'', "addition, application, attachment") or prosthetic implant (medicine), implant is an artificial device that replaces a missing body part, which may be lost thro ...
, such as a
limb Limb can refer to: *Limb (anatomy), an appendage of a human or animal *Limb Music, a record label *Limb (album), an album by Foetus *Limb, in astronomy, the curved edge of the apparent disk of a celestial body, e.g. lunar limb *Limb, a large or mai ...
prosthesis, which might be adorned similarly to an intact body, differently, or not at all. Some styles of prosthetic legs are designed to require ordinary street shoes to function properly. Clothing serves many purposes: it can serve as protection from the
elements
elements
, rough surfaces, sharp stones, rash-causing plants,
insect bites Insect bites and stings occur when an insect is agitated and seeks to Defense in insects, defend itself through its natural defense mechanisms, or when an insect seeks to feed off the bitten person. Some insects inject formic acid, which can cause ...
,
splinter A splinter (also known as a sliver) is a fragment of a larger object, or a foreign body#REDIRECT Foreign body A foreign body (FB) is any object originating outside the body of an organism In biology, an organism (from Ancient Greek, Gre ...

splinter
s, thorns and prickles by providing a barrier between the skin and the environment. Clothing can insulate against cold or hot conditions, and it can provide a
hygienic Hygiene is a series of practices performed to preserve health Health, according to the World Health Organization The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations United Nations Specialized Agencies a ...
barrier, keeping infectious and toxic materials away from the body. It can protect feet from injury and discomfort or facilitate navigation in varied environments. Clothing also provides protection from
ultraviolet radiation Ultraviolet (UV) is a form of electromagnetic radiation In physics Physics is the natural science that studies matter, its Elementary particle, fundamental constituents, its Motion (physics), motion and behavior through Spacetime, ...

ultraviolet radiation
. It may used to prevent glare or increase visual acuity in harsh environments, such as brimmed hats. Clothing is used for protection against injury in specific tasks and occupations, sports, and warfare. Fashioned with pockets, belts, or loops, clothing may provide a means to carry things while freeing the hands. Clothing has significant social factors as well. Wearing clothes is a variable
social norm Social norms are shared standards of acceptable Acceptability is the characteristic of a thing being subject to acceptance for some purpose. A thing is acceptable if it is sufficient to serve the purpose for which it is provided, even if it is f ...

social norm
. It may connote
modesty Modesty, sometimes known as demureness, is a mode of dress and deportment which intends to avoid the encouraging of sexual attraction Sexual attraction is Attractiveness, attraction on the basis of sexual desire or the quality of arousing s ...
. Being deprived of clothing in front of others may be
embarrassing
embarrassing
. In many parts of the world, not wearing clothes in public so that
genitals A sex organ (or reproductive organ) is any part of an animal or plant that is involved in sexual reproduction Sexual reproduction is a type of reproduction that involves a complex Biological life cycle, life cycle in which a gamete (such as a sp ...
,
breast The breast is one of two prominences located on the upper ventral Standard anatomical terms of location deal unambiguously with the of s, including s. Terms used generally derive from or roots and used to describe something in its . Th ...

breast
s, or
buttocks The buttocks (singular: buttock) are two rounded portions of the exterior anatomy of most , located on the posterior of the pelvic region. In humans, the buttocks are located between the lower back and the . They are composed of a layer of e ...

buttocks
are visible could be considered
indecent exposure Indecent exposure is an expression that describes the deliberate public exposure by a person of a portion of their body in a manner contrary to local standards of appropriate behavior. Laws and social attitudes regarding indecent exposure vary ...
. Pubic area or genital coverage is the most frequently encountered minimum found cross-culturally and regardless of climate, implying
social convention A convention is a set of agreed, stipulated, or generally accepted wikt:standard, standards, norm (philosophy), norms, social norms, or wikt:criterion, criteria, often taking the form of a custom. In a social context, a convention may retain the ...
as the basis of customs. Clothing also may be used to communicate social status, wealth, group identity, and individualism. Some forms of
personal protective equipment Personal protective equipment (PPE) is protective clothing A kanga, worn throughout the African Great Lakes region Clothing (also known as clothes, apparel, and attire) are items worn on the body. Typically, clothing is made of fabr ...
amount to clothing, such as coveralls,
chaps The Clearing House Automated Payment System (CHAPS) is real-time gross settlement Real-time gross settlement (RTGS) systems are specialist Electronic funds transfer, funds transfer systems where the transfer of money or securities takes place from ...

chaps
or a doctor's
white coat A white coat, also known as a laboratory coat or lab coat, is a knee-length overcoat or Smock-frock, smock worn by professionals in the medicine, medical field or by those involved in laboratory work. The coat protects their street clothes and al ...
, with similar requirements for maintenance and
cleaning Cleaning is the process of removing unwanted substances, such as dirt, infectious agents, and other impurities, from an object or environment. Cleaning occurs in many different contexts, and uses many different methods. Several occupations are de ...

cleaning
as other textiles (
boxing glove Boxing gloves are cushioned glove A glove is a garment covering the hand. Gloves usually have separate sheaths or openings for each finger and the thumb. If there is an opening but no (or a short) covering sheath for each finger they are c ...
s function both as protective equipment and as a
sparring Sparring is a form of training Image:Christer Fuglesang underwater EVA simulation for STS-116.jpg, An astronaut in training for an extravehicular activity mission using an underwater simulation environment on Earth. Training is teaching, or dev ...
weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting, crime, law enforcement, self-defe ...
, so the equipment aspect rises above the glove aspect). More specialized forms of protective equipment, such as
face shield A face shield, an item of personal protective equipment Personal protective equipment (PPE) is protective clothing, helmets, goggles, or other garments or equipment designed to protect the wearer's body from injury or infection. The hazar ...
s are classified protective accessories. At the far extreme, self-enclosing
diving suit A diving suit is a garment or device designed to protect a diver from the underwater environment. A diving suit may also incorporate a breathing gas supply (i.e. Standard diving dress or atmospheric diving suit). but in most cases applies only to ...
s or
space suit A space suit or spacesuit is a garment worn to keep a human alive in the harsh environment of outer space Outer space, commonly shortened to space, is the expanse that exists beyond Earth Earth is the third planet from the Sun ...

space suit
s are form fitting body covers, and amount to a form of dress, without being clothing per se, while containing enough
high technology High technology (high tech) or frontier technology (frontier tech) is technology Technology ("science of craft", from Ancient Greek, Greek , ''techne'', "art, skill, cunning of hand"; and , ''wikt:-logia, -logia'') is the sum of Art techni ...
to amount to more of a
tool A tool is an object that can extend an individual's ability to modify features of the surrounding environment. Although many animals use tool use by animals, simple tools, only human beings, whose use of stone tools dates back Paleolithic, hun ...

tool
than a garment. This line will continue to blur as
wearable technology Wearable technology, wearables, fashion technology, smartwear, tech togs, streetwear tech, skin electronics or fashion electronics are smart electronic devices (electronic device with micro-controllers) that are worn close to and/or on the surface ...
embeds assistive devices directly into the fabric itself; the enabling innovations are ultra low power consumption and flexible electronic substrates. Clothing also hybridizes into a personal
transportation Transport (in British English British English (BrE) is the standard dialect of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval Engl ...

transportation
system (
ice skates Ice skates are metal blades attached underfoot and used to propel the bearer across a sheet of while . The first ice skates were made from leg bones of horse, ox or deer, and were attached to feet with leather straps. These skates required a pol ...
,
roller skates Roller skates, "quad skates", are shoes or bindings that fit onto shoes that are worn to enable the wearer to roll along on wheels. The first roller skate was effectively an ice skate Ice skates are metal blades attached underfoot and used to ...

roller skates
,
cargo pants upPair of cargo pants Cargo pants or cargo trousers, also sometimes called combat trousers (or combat pants) after their original military purpose, are loosely cut pants Trousers, slacks, or pants (North American English) are an item of cloth ...
, other outdoor survival gear,
one-man band A one-man band is a musician who plays a number of instruments simultaneously using their hands, feet, limbs, and various mechanical or electronic contraptions. One-man bands also often sing while they perform. The simplest type of "one-man band" ...
) or concealment system (
stage magician Magic, which encompasses the subgenres of illusion, stage magic, and close up magic, among others, is a performing art in which audiences are entertainment, entertained by tricks, effects, or illusions of seemingly impossible feats, using natur ...
s, hidden linings or
pockets
pockets
in
tradecraft Tradecraft, within the intelligence community, refers to the techniques, methods and technologies used in modern espionage Espionage or spying is the act of obtaining Secrecy, secret or Confidentiality, confidential information or divulgin ...
, integrated holsters for
concealed carry Concealed carry, or carrying a concealed weapon (CCW), is the practice of carrying a weapon A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase ...
,
merchandise Merchandising is any practice which contributes to the sale of products Product may refer to: Business * Product (business), an item that serves as a solution to a specific consumer problem. * Product (project management), a deliverable or set ...
-laden
trench coat A trench coat or trenchcoat is variety of coat made of waterproof Waterproofing is the process of making an object or structure waterproof or water-resistant so that it remains relatively unaffected by water or resisting the ingress of water ...
s on the
black market A black market, underground economy or shadow economy, is a clandestine ''The ClanDestine'' (also known simply as ''ClanDestine'') is an appellation used to refer to the Destines, a fictional secret family of long-lived superhuman beings ...
— where the purpose of the clothing often carries over into
disguise A disguise can be anything which conceals or changes a person's physical appearance Human physical appearance is the outward phenotype right , Here the relation between genotype and phenotype is illustrated, using a Punnett square, for ...
). A mode of dress fit to purpose, whether stylistic or functional, is known as an outfit or ensemble.


Origin and history


Early use

Scientists have never agreed on when humans began wearing clothes and estimates submitted by various experts have ranged greatly from 3 million to 40,000 years ago. More recently, studies involving the evolution of body
lice Louse (plural: lice) is the common name for members of the clade Phthiraptera, which contains nearly 5,000 species of wingless Parasitism, parasitic insect. Phthiraptera has variously been recognized as an order (biology), order, infraorder, ...
have pointed to a more recent development, implying the use of clothes around 170,000 years ago with others indicating as little as 40,000. In September 2021, scientists reported evidence of clothes being made 120,000 years ago based on findings in deposits in
Morocco ) , image_map = Morocco (orthographic projection, WS claimed).svg , map_caption = Location of Morocco in northwest Africa.Dark green: Undisputed territory of Morocco.Lighter green: Western Sahara, a United Nations lis ...

Morocco
. However, despite these indications, there is no single estimate that is widely accepted. Ralf Kittler, Manfred Kayser, and Mark Stoneking,
anthropologists An anthropologist is a person engaged in the practice of anthropology. Anthropology is the study of aspects of humans within past and present Society, societies. Social anthropology, cultural anthropology and philosophical anthropology study the nor ...
at the
Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology The Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology (german: Max-Planck-Institut für evolutionäre Anthropologie, shortened to MPI EVA) is a research institute based in Leipzig, Germany, that was founded in 1997. It is part of the Max-Planc ...

Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology
, conducted a genetic analysis of human
body lice The body louse (''Pediculus humanus humanus'', also known as ''Pediculus humanus corporis'') is a hematophagic ectoparasite Parasitism is a symbiotic relationship between species In biology, a species is the basic unit of biologic ...

body lice
that suggests clothing originated around 170,000 years ago. Body lice are an indicator of clothes-wearing, since most humans have sparse body hair, and lice thus require human clothing to maintain presence on their host. Their research suggests that the invention of clothing may have coincided with the northward migration of modern ''
Homo sapiens Humans (''Homo sapiens'') are the most abundant and widespread species of primate, characterized by bipedality, bipedalism and large, complex brains. This has enabled the development of advanced tools, culture, and language. Humans are highl ...

Homo sapiens
'' away from the warm
climate Climate is the long-term pattern of weather Weather is the state of the atmosphere An atmosphere (from the greek words ἀτμός ''(atmos)'', meaning 'vapour', and σφαῖρα ''(sphaira)'', meaning 'ball' or 'sphere') is a la ...

climate
of
Africa Africa is the world's second-largest and second-most populous continent A continent is any of several large landmass A landmass, or land mass, is a large region In geography Geography (from Greek: , ''geographia'', ...

Africa
, thought to have begun between 100,000 and 50,000 years ago. A second group of researchers using similar genetic methods estimate that clothing originated between 114,000 and 30,000 years ago. According to anthropologists and archaeologists, the earliest clothing likely consisted of
fur Fur is a thick growth of hair Hair is a protein filament In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular bi ...

fur
,
leather Leather is a strong, flexible and durable material obtained from the tanning Tanning may refer to: *Tanning (leather), treating animal skins to produce leather *Sun tanning, using the sun to darken pale skin **Indoor tanning, the use of arti ...

leather
, leaves, or grass that was draped, wrapped, or tied around the body. Knowledge of such clothing remains inferential, since clothing materials deteriorate quickly compared to stone, bone, shell, and metal artifacts. Archeologists have identified very early
sewing needle A sewing needle, used for hand-sewing Sewing is the craft of fastening or attaching objects using stitches made with a sewing needle A sewing needle, used for hand- sewing, is a long slender tool with a pointed tip at one end and a hole (o ...

sewing needle
s of bone and ivory from about 30,000 BC, found near
KostenkiKostenki or Kostyonki (russian: Костёнки) may refer to: * Kostenki, Kirov Oblast, a village#Russia, village in Murashinsky District of Kirov Oblast *Kostenki, Smolensk Oblast, a village in Safonovsky District of Smolensk Oblast *Kostyonki ...
,
Russia Russia ( rus, link=no, Россия, Rossiya, ), or the Russian Federation, is a country spanning Eastern Europe Eastern Europe is the eastern region of . There is no consistent definition of the precise area it covers, partly because th ...

Russia
in 1988. Dyed
flax Flax, also known as common flax or linseed, is a flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may ...

flax
fibers that could have been used in clothing have been found in a prehistoric cave in the Republic of Georgia that date back to 34,000 BC.


Making clothing

Some human cultures, such as the various peoples of the
Arctic Circle The Arctic Circle is one of the two polar circle A polar circle is a geographic term for a conditional circular line (arc) referring either to the Arctic Circle The Arctic Circle is one of the two s and the most northerly of the fiv ...

Arctic Circle
, traditionally make their clothing entirely of prepared and decorated furs and skins. Other cultures supplemented or replaced leather and skins with cloth: woven, knitted, or twined from various animal and vegetable fibers including wool,
linen Linen () is a textile made from the fibers of the flax plant. Linen is very strong, absorbent, and dries faster than cotton. Because of these properties, linen is comfortable to wear in hot weather and is valued for use in garments. It also h ...

linen
,
cotton Cotton is a soft, fluffy staple fiber Fiber or fibre (from la, fibra, links=no) is a natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of s ...

cotton
,
silk Silk is a natural Nature, in the broadest sense, is the natural, physical, material world or universe The universe ( la, universus) is all of space and time and their contents, including planets, stars, galaxies, and all o ...

silk
, hemp, and
ramie Ramie (pronounced: , ; from Malay language, Malay ) is a flowering plant in the nettle family Urticaceae, native to eastern Asia. It is a Herbaceous plant, herbaceous perennial plant, perennial growing to tall;
. Although modern consumers may take the production of clothing for granted, making fabric by hand is a tedious and labor-intensive process involving fiber making, spinning, and weaving. The
textile A textile is a flexible material made by creating an interlocking bundle of yarn Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable for use in the production of textiles, sewing, crocheting, knitting, weaving, embroidery, ...

textile
industry was the first to be mechanized – with the powered loom – during the
Industrial Revolution The Industrial Revolution was the transition to new manufacturing processes in Great Britain, continental Europe Continental Europe or mainland Europe is the contiguous continent A continent is any of several large landmasse ...
. Different cultures have evolved various ways of creating clothes out of cloth. One approach simply involves draping the cloth. Many people wore, and still wear, garments consisting of rectangles of cloth wrapped to fit – for example, the
dhoti The dhoti, also known as Dhuti, mardani, chaadra, dhotar or panchey, is a type of sarong A sarong or sarung (); is a large tube or length of textile, fabric, often wrapped around the waist, worn in Southeast Asia, Southern Asia, Western Asia, Nort ...

dhoti
for men and the
sari A sari (sometimes also shari or Hunterian transliteration, misspelled as saree)The name of the garment in various Languages of South Asia, regional languages include: * as, শাৰী, xārī, translit-std=ISO * bn, শাড়ি, śā ...

sari
for women in the Indian subcontinent, the Scottish
kilt A kilt ( gd, fèileadh ; Irish language, Irish: ''féileadh'') is a type of knee-length men’s dress skirt non-wikt:bifurcation, bifurcated with pleats at the back, originating in the traditional dress of Gaels, Gaelic men and boys in the Scot ...

kilt
, and the Javanese
sarong A sarong or sarung (); is a large tube or length of textile, fabric, often wrapped around the waist, worn in Southeast Asia, Southern Asia, Western Asia, Northern Africa, East Africa, West Africa and on many Pacific islands. The fabric often has wov ...

sarong
. The clothes may simply be tied up (dhoti and sari) or implement pins or belts to hold the garments in place (kilt and sarong). The cloth remains uncut, and people of various sizes can wear the garment. Another approach involves measuring, cutting, and sewing the cloth by hand or with a
sewing machine A sewing machine is a used to and materials together with . Sewing machines were invented during the first Industrial Revolution to decrease the amount of manual work performed in clothing companies. Since the invention of the first sewing m ...

sewing machine
. Clothing can be cut from a
sewing pattern In sewing and fashion design, a pattern is the stencil, template from which the parts of a garment are traced onto fabric before being cut out and assembled. Patterns are usually made of paper, and are sometimes made of sturdier materials like paper ...

sewing pattern
and adjusted by a tailor to the wearer's measurements. An adjustable sewing mannequin or
dress form A dress form is a three-dimensional Three-dimensional space (also: 3-space or, rarely, tri-dimensional space) is a geometric setting in which three values (called parameter A parameter (from the Ancient Greek language, Ancient Greek wikt: ...
is used to create form-fitting clothing. If the fabric is expensive, the tailor tries to use every bit of the cloth rectangle in constructing the clothing; perhaps cutting triangular pieces from one corner of the cloth, and adding them elsewhere as
gusset In sewing, a gusset is a triangular or rhomboidal piece of fabric A textile is a flexible material made by creating an interlocking network of yarn Yarn is a long continuous length of interlocked fibres, suitable for use in the produ ...

gusset
s. Traditional European patterns for
shirt A shirt is a cloth garment for the upper body (from the neck to the waist). Originally an worn exclusively by men, it has become, in , a catch-all term for a broad variety of upper-body garments and undergarments. In , a shirt is more specific ...

shirt
s and
chemise A chemise or shift is a classic Smock-frock, smock, or a modern type of women's undergarment or dress. Historically, a chemise was a simple garment worn next to the skin to protect clothing from sweat and body oils, the precursor to the modern shi ...

chemise
s take this approach. These remnants can also be reused to make patchwork pockets, hats, vests, and skirts. Modern European
fashion Fashion is a form of self-expression and autonomy at a particular period and place and in a specific context, of clothing, footwear, Lifestyle (sociology), lifestyle, Fashion accessory, accessories, makeup, hairstyle, and body posture. The term i ...

fashion
treats cloth much less conservatively, typically cutting in such a way as to leave various odd-shaped cloth remnants. Industrial sewing operations sell these as waste; domestic sewers may turn them into
quilt A quilt is a multi-layered textile, traditionally composed of two or more layers of fabric or fiber. Commonly three layers are used. These layers traditionally include a woven cloth top, a layer of padding, batting or wadding, and a woven ba ...

quilt
s. In the thousands of years that humans have been making clothing, they have created an astonishing array of styles, many of which have been reconstructed from surviving garments,
photograph A photograph (also known as a photo) is an image An SAR radar image acquired by the SIR-C/X-SAR radar on board the Space Shuttle Endeavour shows the Teide volcano. The city of Santa Cruz de Tenerife is visible as the purple and white ...
s,
painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid A liquid is a nearly incompressible In fluid mechanics Fluid mechanics is the branch of physics concerned with the mechanics Mechanics (Ancient ...

painting
s,
mosaic A mosaic is a pattern or image made of small regular or irregular pieces of colored stone, glass or ceramic, held in place by plaster/mortar, and covering a surface. Mosaics are often used as floor and wall decoration, and were particularly pop ...

mosaic
s, etc., as well as from written descriptions. Costume history can inspire current
fashion designer Fashion is a form of self-expression and autonomy at a particular period and place and in a specific context, of clothing, footwear, Lifestyle (sociology), lifestyle, Fashion accessory, accessories, makeup, hairstyle, and body posture. The term i ...

fashion designer
s, as well as costumiers for
plays Play most commonly refers to: * Play (activity), an activity done for enjoyment * Play (theatre), a work of drama Play may refer also to: Computers and technology * Google Play, a digital content service * Play Framework, a Java framework * Play ...
,
film A film, also called a movie, motion picture or moving picture, is a work of visual art The visual arts are art forms such as painting Painting is the practice of applying paint Paint is any pigmented liquid, liquefiable, ...

film
s,
television Television, sometimes shortened to TV or telly, is a telecommunication Telecommunication is the transmission of information by various types of technologies over wire A wire is a single usually cylindrical A cylinder (from Gre ...

television
, and
historical reenactment Historical reenactment (or re-enactment) is an educational entertainment, educational or entertainment activity in which mainly amateur hobbyists and history enthusiasts put on uniforms and follow a plan to recreate aspects of a historical event o ...
.


Clothing as comfort

Comfort Comfort (or being comfortable'')'' is a sense of physical or psychological pleasure, ease, often characterized as a lack of suffering, hardship. Persons who are lacking in comfort are uncomfortable, or experiencing discomfort. A degree of psyc ...

Comfort
is related to various perceptions, physiological, social, and psychological needs, and after food, it is clothing that satisfies these comfort needs. Clothing provides aesthetic, tactile, thermal, moisture, and pressure comfort. * Aesthetic comfort: Visual perception is influenced by
color Color (American English American English (AmE, AE, AmEng, USEng, en-US), sometimes called United States English or U.S. English, is the set of varieties of the English language native to the United States. Currently, American Engli ...
, fabric construction, style, garment fit, fashion compatibility, and finish of clothing material. Aesthetic comfort is necessary for psychological and social comfort. *
Thermoregulation in humansAs in other mammals, thermoregulation in humans is an important aspect of human homeostasis, homeostasis. In thermoregulation, body heat is generated mostly in the deep organs, especially the liver, brain, and heart, and in contraction of skeletal mu ...
and thermophysiological comfort: Thermophysiological comfort is the capacity of the clothing material that makes the balance of moisture and heat between the body and the environment. It is a property of textile materials that creates ease by maintaining moisture and thermal levels in a human's resting and active states. The selection of textile material significantly affects the comfort of the wearer. Different textile fibers have unique properties that make them suitable for use in various environments. Natural fibers are breathable and absorb moisture, and synthetic fibers are hydrophobic; they repel moisture and do not allow air to pass. Different environments demand a diverse selection of clothing materials. Hence, the appropriate choice is important. The major determinants that influence thermophysiological comfort are permeable construction, heat, and moisture transfer rate. ** Thermal comfort: One primary criterion for our physiological needs is thermal comfort. The heat dissipation effectiveness of clothing gives the wearer a neither very hot nor very cold feel. The optimum temperature for thermal comfort of the skin surface is between 28 and 30 degrees Celsius, i.e., a neutral temperature. Thermophysiology reacts whenever the temperature falls below or exceeds the neutral point on either side; it is discomforting below 28 and above 30 degrees. Clothing maintains a thermal balance; it keeps the skin dry and cool. It helps to keep the body from overheating while avoiding heat from the environment. ** Moisture comfort: Moisture comfort is the prevention of a damp sensation. According to Hollies' research, it feels uncomfortable when more than "50% to 65% of the body is wet." *
Tactile
Tactile
comfort: Tactile comfort is a resistance to the discomfort related to the friction created by clothing against the body. It is related to the smoothness, roughness, softness, and stiffness of the fabric used in clothing. The degree of tactile discomfort may vary between individuals, which is possible due to various factors including allergies, tickling, prickling, skin abrasion, coolness, and the fabric's weight, structure, and thickness. There are specific surface finishes (mechanical and chemical) that can enhance tactile comfort. Fleece sweatshirts and velvet clothing, for example. Soft, clingy, stiff, heavy, light, hard, sticky, scratchy, prickly are all terms used to describe tactile sensations. * Pressure comfort: The comfort of the human body's pressure receptors' (present in the skin) sensory response towards clothing. Fabric with lycra feels more comfortable because of this response and superior pressure comfort. The sensation response is influenced by the material's structure: snugging, looseness, heavy, light, soft, or stiff structuring.


Functions

The most obvious function of clothing is to protect the wearer from the elements. It serves to prevent
wind Wind is the natural movement of air or other gases relative to a planet's surface. Wind occurs on a range of scales, from thunderstorm A thunderstorm, also known as an electrical storm or a lightning storm, is a storm characterized by th ...

wind
damage and provides protection from
sunburn Sunburn is a form of radiation burn A radiation burn is a damage to the skin Skin is the layer of usually soft, flexible outer tissue covering the body of a vertebrate animal, with three main functions: protection, regulation, and sensation. ...

sunburn
. In the cold, it offers
thermal insulation Thermal insulation is the reduction of heat transfer Heat transfer is a discipline of thermal engineering that concerns the generation, use, conversion, and exchange of thermal energy (heat) between physical systems. Heat transfer is classif ...

thermal insulation
. Shelter can reduce the functional need for clothing. For example, coats,
hat A collection of 18th and 19th century men's beaver felt hats A hat is a head covering which is worn for various reasons, including protection against weather conditions, ceremonial reasons such as university graduation, religious reasons, safet ...

hat
s,
glove A glove is a garment A kanga, worn throughout the African Great Lakes region Clothing (also known as clothes, apparel and attire) are items worn on the body. Clothing is typically made of fabrics or textile A textile is a flexi ...

glove
s, and other outer layers are normally removed when entering a warm place. Similarly, clothing has seasonal and regional aspects so that thinner materials and fewer layers of clothing generally are worn in warmer regions and seasons than in colder ones. Boots, hats, jackets, panchos, and coats designed to protect from rain and snow are specialized clothing items. Clothing has been made from a very wide variety of materials, ranging from leather and
fur Fur is a thick growth of hair Hair is a protein filament In biology Biology is the natural science that studies life and living organisms, including their anatomy, physical structure, Biochemistry, chemical processes, Molecular bi ...

fur
s to woven fabrics to elaborate and exotic natural and synthetic fabrics. Not all body coverings are regarded as clothing. Articles carried rather than worn normally are considered
accessories Accessory may refer to: * Accessory (legal term), a person who assists a criminal In anatomy * Accessory bone * Accessory muscle * Accessory nucleus, in anatomy, a cranial nerve nucleus * Accessory nerve The accessory nerve is a cranial ...
rather than clothing (such as
Handbags A handbag, commonly known as a purse in North American English North American English (NAmE, NAE) is the most generalized variety of the English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in His ...
), items worn on a single part of the body and easily removed (
scarves A scarf, plural ''scarves'', is a piece of fabric worn around the neck or head for warmth, sun protection, cleanliness, fashion, or religious reasons or used to show the support for a sports club or team. They can be made in a variety of diff ...

scarves
), worn purely for adornment (
jewelry Jewellery or jewelry consists of decorative items worn for personal adornment 150px, The principal adornment of these girls from the Bundu tribe in Sierra Leone is the adornment of bodies and faces with markings produced by the smearing on by ...

jewelry
), or items that do not serve a protective function. For instance, corrective
eyeglasses Glasses, also known as eyeglasses or spectacles, are vision eyewear, consisting of glass or hard plastic lenses mounted in a frame that holds them in front of a person's eyes, typically utilizing a bridge over the nose and hinged arms (known ...

eyeglasses
, Arctic
goggles Goggles, or safety glasses, are forms of protective eyewear that usually enclose or protect the area surrounding the eye in order to prevent particulates, water or chemical A chemical substance is a form of matter having constant chemical c ...
, and
sunglasses Sunglasses or sun glasses (informally called shades or sunnies; more names Sunglasses#Other names, below) are a form of Eye protection, protective eyewear designed primarily to prevent bright sunlight and high-energy visible light from damaging ...

sunglasses
would not be considered an accessory because of their protective functions. Clothing protects against many things that might injure or irritate the uncovered human body, including rain, snow, wind, and other weather, as well as from the sun. Garments that are too sheer, thin, small, or tight offer less protection. Appropriate clothes can also reduce risk during activities such as work or sport. Some clothing protects from specific hazards, such as
insect Insects (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be in ...

insect
s, noxious chemicals, weather,
weapons A weapon, arm or armament is any implement or device that can be used with the intent to inflict physical damage or harm. Weapons are used to increase the efficacy and efficiency of activities such as hunting Hunting is the practice of see ...

weapons
, and contact with abrasive substances. Humans have devised clothing solutions to environmental or other hazards: such as space suits, air conditioned clothing,
armor Armour (British English) or armor (American English; see American and British English spelling differences#-our, -or, spelling differences) is a covering to protect an object, individual, or vehicle from damage, especially direct contact weapon ...

armor
,
diving suits A diving suit is a garment or device designed to protect a diver from the underwater environment. A diving suit may also incorporate a breathing gas supply (i.e. Standard diving dress or atmospheric diving suit). but in most cases applies only to ...
,
swimsuits A swimsuit is an item of clothing designed to be worn by people engaging in a water-based activity or List of water sports, water sports, such as human swimming, swimming, Diving (sport), diving and surfing, or sun-orientated activities, such as s ...
,
bee-keeper gear
bee-keeper gear
, motorcycle leathers,
high-visibility clothing High-visibility clothing, sometimes shortened to hi vis or hi viz, is any clothing A kanga, worn throughout the African Great Lakes region Clothing (also known as clothes, apparel, and attire) are items worn on the body. Typically, clot ...
, and other pieces of
protective clothing Personal protective equipment (PPE) is protective clothing, helmets, goggles, or other garments or equipment designed to protect the wearer's body from injury or infection. The hazards addressed by protective equipment include physical, elect ...

protective clothing
. The distinction between clothing and protective equipment is not always clear-cut, since clothes designed to be fashionable often have protective value and clothes designed for function often incorporate
fashion Fashion is a form of self-expression and autonomy at a particular period and place and in a specific context, of clothing, footwear, Lifestyle (sociology), lifestyle, Fashion accessory, accessories, makeup, hairstyle, and body posture. The term i ...

fashion
in their design. The choice of clothes also has social implications. They cover parts of the body that social norms require to be covered, act as a form of adornment, and serve other social purposes. Someone who lacks the means to procure reasonable clothing due to poverty or affordability, or simply lack of inclination, sometimes is said to be scruffy, ragged, or shabby. Clothing performs a range of social and
cultural Culture () is an umbrella term which encompasses the social behavior Social behavior is behavior Behavior (American English) or behaviour (British English; American and British English spelling differences#-our, -or, see spelling diff ...

cultural
functions, such as individual, occupational and gender differentiation, and social status. Alternative (This work is one of the earliest attempts at an overview of the psycho-social and practical functions of clothing) In many societies, norms about clothing reflect standards of
modesty Modesty, sometimes known as demureness, is a mode of dress and deportment which intends to avoid the encouraging of sexual attraction Sexual attraction is Attractiveness, attraction on the basis of sexual desire or the quality of arousing s ...
, religion, gender, and social status. Clothing may also function as adornment and an expression of personal taste or style.


Scholarship


Function of clothing

Serious books on clothing and its functions appear from the nineteenth century as History of colonialism, European colonial powers interacted with new environments such as tropical ones in Asia.e.g. Some scientific research into the multiple functions of clothing in the first half of the twentieth century, with publications such as J.C. Flügel's ''Psychology of Clothes'' in 1930, and Newburgh's seminal ''Physiology of Heat Regulation and The Science of Clothing'' in 1949. By 1968, the field of environmental physiology had advanced and expanded significantly, but the science of clothing in relation to environmental physiology had changed little. (reviewer's name appears next to Newburgh, but was not the co-author. See also reviewer's name at bottom of page). There has since been considerable research, and the knowledge base has grown significantly, but the main concepts remain unchanged, and indeed, Newburgh's book continues to be cited by contemporary authors, including those attempting to develop thermoregulatory models of clothing development.


History of clothing

Clothing reveals much about human history. According to Professor Kiki Smith of Smith College, garments preserved in collections are resources for study similar to books and paintings. Scholars around the world have studied a wide range of clothing topics, including the history of specific items of clothing, clothing styles in different cultural groups, and the business of clothing and fashion. The textile curator Linda Baumgarten writes that "clothing provides a remarkable picture of the daily lives, beliefs, expectations, and hopes of those who lived in the past. Clothing presents a number of challenges to historians. Clothing made of textiles or skins is subject to decay, and the erosion of physical integrity may be seen as a loss of cultural information. Costume collections often focus on important pieces of clothing considered unique or otherwise significant, limiting the opportunities scholars have to study everyday clothing.


Cultural aspects


Gender differentiation

Ring ceremony, Indian Hindu wedding.jpg, A Hindu North Indian wedding, the groom wearing a sherwani and Pagri (turban), pagri turban and the bride wearing a
sari A sari (sometimes also shari or Hunterian transliteration, misspelled as saree)The name of the garment in various Languages of South Asia, regional languages include: * as, শাৰী, xārī, translit-std=ISO * bn, শাড়ি, śā ...

sari
Shinzō Abe and Ivanka Trump (4).jpg, Japanese Prime Minister, Japanese PM Shinzō Abe and Ivanka Trump (right) wearing Western-style gender-differentiated business suits (2017) Gabriel Garko and Laura Torrisi - nicogenin - 66ème Festival de Venise (Mostra) - The Road (3).jpg, Italian actors Gabriel Garko in a Suit (clothing), suit and Laura Torrisi in a gown, considered Red carpet fashion by designer dress code (2009) Sweden Vaxholm 1938.jpg, A group of women and men gathered at sport event in Sweden (1938) 3rd Duke of Fife in Kilt. Allan Warren.jpg, 3rd Duke of Fife wearing a traditional Scottish kilt (1984)
In most cultures, gender differentiation of clothing is considered appropriate. The differences are in styles, colors, fabrics, and types. In contemporay Western societies, skirts, Dress (garment), dresses, and high-heeled shoes are usually seen as women's clothing, while neckties usually are seen as men's clothing. Trousers were once seen as exclusively men's clothing, but nowadays are worn by both genders. Men's clothes are often more practical (that is, they can function well under a wide variety of situations), but a wider range of clothing styles is available for women. Typically, men are allowed to bare chested, bare their chests in a greater variety of public places. It is generally common for a woman to wear clothing perceived as masculine, while the opposite is seen as unusual. Contemporary men may sometimes choose to wear men's skirts such as togas or
kilt A kilt ( gd, fèileadh ; Irish language, Irish: ''féileadh'') is a type of knee-length men’s dress skirt non-wikt:bifurcation, bifurcated with pleats at the back, originating in the traditional dress of Gaels, Gaelic men and boys in the Scot ...

kilt
s in particular cultures, especially on ceremonial occasions. In previous times, such garments often were worn as normal daily clothing by men. In some cultures, sumptuary laws regulate what men and women are required to wear. Islam requires women to wear certain forms of attire, usually hijab. What items required varies in different Muslim societies; however, women are usually required to cover more of their bodies than men. Articles of clothing Muslim women wear under these laws or traditions range from the headscarf, head-scarf to the burqa. Some contemporary clothing styles designed to be worn by either gender, such as T-shirts, have started out as menswear, but some articles, such as the fedora, originally were a style for women.


Social status

Rajput Sherwani 2014-04-23 04-27.JPG, ''Achkan'' sherwani and ''churidar'' (lower body) worn by Arvind Singh Mewar and his kin during a Hindu wedding in Rajasthan, India, are items traditionally worn by the elites of the Indian subcontinent MyBarong created this Custom tailored Barong Tagalog for my wedding.jpg, A Barong Tagalog made for a wedding ceremony Prokudin-Gorskii-19.jpg, Mohammed Alim Khan, Alim Khan's bemedaled robe conveys a social message about his wealth, status, and power In some societies, clothing may be used to indicate rank or social status, status. In ancient Rome, for example, only senators could wear garments dyed with Tyrian purple. In traditional Native Hawaiians, Hawaiian society, only high-ranking chiefs could wear feather cloaks and palaoa, or carved whale teeth. In China, before establishment of the Republic of China, republic, only the emperor could wear yellow. History provides many examples of elaborate sumptuary laws that regulated what people could wear. In societies without such laws, which includes most modern societies, social status is signaled by the purchase of rare or luxury items that are limited by cost to those with wealth or status. In addition, peer pressure influences clothing choice.


Religion

Gandhara Buddha (tnm).jpeg, The Gautama Buddha, Buddha wearing Kasaya (clothing), kāṣāya robes, originating from ancient India, these robes were worn by fully ordained Buddhist monks and nuns Clerical clothing.jpg, Clerical clothing worn by Clergy#Christianity, Catholic priests Some religious clothing might be considered a special case of occupational clothing. Sometimes it is worn only during the performance of religious ceremonies. However, it also may be worn every day as a marker for special religious status. For example, Jains and Muslim men wear unstitched cloth pieces when performing religious ceremonies. The unstitched cloth signifies unified and complete devotion to the task at hand, with no digression. Sikhs wear a turban as it is a part of their religion. In some religions such as Hinduism, Sikhism, Buddhism, and Jainism the cleanliness of religious dresses is of paramount importance and is considered to indicate purity. Jewish ritual requires rending of one's upper garment as a sign of mourning. The Quran says about husbands and wives, regarding clothing: "...They are clothing/covering (Libaas) for you; and you for them" (chapter 2:187).Clergy#Christianity, Christian clergy members wear religious vestments during liturgy, liturgical services and may wear specific clerical clothing, non-liturgical clothing at other times. Clothing appears in numerous contexts in the Bible. The most prominent passages are: the story of Adam and Eve who made coverings for themselves out of fig leaf, fig leaves, Joseph (son of Jacob), Joseph's coat of many colors, and the clothing of Judah (Bible), Judah and Tamar (Genesis), Tamar, Mordecai and Esther. Furthermore, the priests officiating in the Temple in Jerusalem had very specific garments, the lack of which made one liable to death.


Contemporary clothing


Western dress code

The Western dress code has changed over the past 500+ years. The mechanization of the textile industry made many varieties of cloth widely available at affordable prices. Styles have changed, and the availability of synthetic fabrics has changed the definition of what is "stylish". In the latter half of the twentieth century, jeans, blue jeans became very popular, and are now worn to events that normally demand formal attire. Activewear has also become a large and growing market. In the Western dress code, jeans are worn by both men and women. There are several unique styles of jeans found that include: high rise jeans, mid rise jeans, low rise jeans, bootcut jeans, straight jeans, cropped jeans, skinny jeans, cuffed jeans, boyfriend jeans, and capri jeans. The licensing of designer names was pioneered by designers such as Pierre Cardin, Yves Saint Laurent (designer), Yves Saint Laurent, and Guy Laroche in the 1960s and has been a common practice within the fashion industry from about the 1970s. Among the more popular include Marc Jacobs and Gucci, named for Marc Jacobs and Guccio Gucci respectively.


Spread of western styles

By the early years of the twenty-first century, western clothing styles had, to some extent, become international styles. This process began hundreds of years earlier, during the periods of European colonialism. The process of cultural dissemination has been perpetuated over the centuries, spreading Western culture and styles, most recently as Western media corporations have penetrated markets throughout the world. Fast fashion clothing has also become a global phenomenon. These garments are less expensive, mass-produced Western clothing. Also, donated used good, used clothing from Western countries is delivered to people in poor countries by charity organizations.


Ethnic and cultural heritage

People may wear ethnic or national costume, national dress on special occasions or in certain roles or occupations. For example, most Korean men and women have adopted Western-style dress for daily wear, but still wear traditional hanboks on special occasions, such as weddings and cultural holidays. Also, items of Western wear, Western dress may be worn or accessorized in distinctive, non-Western ways. A Tongan man may combine a used T-shirt with a Tongan wrapped skirt, or tupenu.


Sport and activity

For practical, comfort or safety reasons most sports and physical activities are practiced wearing special clothing. Common sportswear (activewear), sportswear garments include shorts, T-shirts, tennis shirts, leotards, tracksuits, and athletic shoe, trainers. Specialized garments include wet suits (for human swimming, swimming, Underwater diving, diving, or surfing), salopettes (for skiing), and leotards (for gymnastics). Also, spandex materials often are used as base layers to soak up sweat. Spandex is preferable for active sports that require form fitting garments, such as volleyball, wrestling, track and field, dance, gymnastics, and swimming.


Fashion

Paris set the 1900–1940 fashion trends for Europe and North America. In the 1920s the goal was all about getting loose. Women wore dresses all day, every day. Day dresses had a drop waist, which was a sash or belt around the low waist or hip and a skirt that hung anywhere from the ankle on up to the knee, never above. Daywear had sleeves (long to mid-bicep) and a skirt that was straight, pleated, hank hemmed, or tiered. Jewelry was not conspicuous. Hair was often bobbed, giving a boyish look. In the early twenty-first century a diverse range of styles exists in fashion, varying by geography, exposure to modern media, economic conditions, and ranging from expensive haute couture, to traditional garb, to thrift store grunge. Fashion shows are events for designers to show off new and often extravagant designs.


Political issues


Working conditions in the garments industry

Although mechanization transformed most aspects of human clothing industry by the mid-twentieth century, garment workers have continued to labor under challenging conditions that demand repetitive manual labor. Often, mass-produced clothing is made in what are considered by some to be sweatshops, typified by long work hours, lack of benefits, and lack of worker representation. While most examples of such conditions are found in developing countries, clothes made in industrialized nations may also be manufactured under similar conditions. Coalitions of NGOs, designers (including Katharine Hamnett, American Apparel, Veja Sneakers, Veja, Quiksilver, eVocal, and Edun), and campaign groups such as the Clean Clothes Campaign (CCC) and the Institute for Global Labour and Human Rights as well as textile and clothing trade unions have sought to improve these conditions by sponsoring awareness-raising events, which draw the attention of both the media and the general public to the plight of the workers. Outsourcing production to low wage countries such as Bangladesh, China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka became possible when the Multi Fibre Agreement (MFA) was abolished. The MFA, which placed quotas on textiles imports, was deemed a protectionist measure. Although many countries recognize treaties such as the International Labour Organization, which attempt to set standards for worker safety and rights, many countries have made exceptions to certain parts of the treaties or failed to thoroughly enforce them. India for example has not ratified sections 87 and 92 of the treaty. The textile industry, production of textiles has functioned as a consistent industry for developing nations, providing work and wages, whether construed as exploitative or not, to millions of people.


Fur

The use of animal fur in clothing dates to prehistoric times. Currently, although fur is still used by indigenous people in arctic zones and higher elevations for its warmth and protection, in developed countries it is associated with expensive, designer clothing. Once uncontroversial, recently it has been the focus of campaigns on the grounds that campaigners consider it cruel and unnecessary. PETA, along with other animal rights and animal liberation movement, animal liberation groups have called attention to fur farming and other practices they consider cruel.


Life cycle


Clothing maintenance

Clothing suffers assault both from within and without. The human body sheds skin cells and body oils, and it exudes sweat, urine, and feces that may soil clothing. From the outside, sun damage, moisture, abrasion, and dirt assault garments. Fleas and lice can hide in seams. If not cleaned and refurbished, clothing becomes worn and loses its aesthetics and functionality (as when button (clothing), buttons fall off, seams come undone, fabrics thin or tear, and zippers fail). Often, people wear an item of clothing until it falls apart. Some materials present problems. Cleaning leather is difficult, and bark cloth (tapa) cannot be washed without dissolving it. Owners may patch tears and rips, and brush off surface dirt, but materials such as these inevitably age. Most clothing consists of cloth, however, and most cloth can be laundry, laundered and mended (patching, darning, but compare felt).


Laundry, ironing, storage

Humans have developed many specialized methods for laundering clothing, ranging from early methods of pounding clothes against rocks in running streams, to the latest in electronic washing machines and dry cleaning (dissolving dirt in solvents other than water). Hot water washing (boiling), chemical cleaning, and ironing are all traditional methods of Sterilization (microbiology), sterilizing fabrics for hygiene purposes. Many kinds of clothing are designed to be Ironing, ironed before they are worn to remove wrinkles. Most modern formal and semi-formal clothing is in this category (for example, dress shirts and suit (clothing), suits). Ironed clothes are believed to look clean, fresh, and neat. Much contemporary casual clothing is made of knit materials that do not readily wrinkle, and do not require ironing. Some clothing is permanent press, having been treated with a coating (such as polytetrafluoroethylene) that suppresses wrinkles and creates a smooth appearance without ironing. Excess lint or debris may end up on the clothing in between launderings. In such cases, a lint remover may be useful. Once clothes have been laundered and possibly ironed, usually they are hung on clothes hangers or folded, to keep them fresh until they are worn. Clothes are folded to allow them to be stored compactly, to prevent creasing, to preserve creases, or to present them in a more pleasing manner, for instance, when they are put on sale in stores. Certain types of insects and larvae feed on clothing and textiles, such as the black carpet beetle and Clothing Moth, clothing moths. To deter such pests, clothes may be stored in cedar-lined closets or chests, or placed in drawers or containers with materials having pest repellent properties, such as Lavandula#Other uses, lavender or mothballs. Airtight containers (such as sealed, heavy-duty plastic bags) may deter insect pest damage to clothing materials as well.


Non-iron

A resin used for making non-wrinkle shirts releases formaldehyde, which could cause contact dermatitis for some people; no disclosure requirements exist, and in 2008 the U.S. Government Accountability Office tested formaldehyde in clothing and found that generally the highest levels were in non-wrinkle shirts and pants. In 1999, a study of the effect of washing on the formaldehyde levels found that after six months of routine washing, 7 of 27 shirts still had levels in excess of 75 ppm (the safe limit for direct skin exposure).


Mending

When the raw material – cloth – was worth more than labor, it made sense to expend labor in saving it. In past times, mending was an art. A meticulous tailor or seamstress could mend rips with thread raveled from hems and seam edges so skillfully that the tear was practically invisible. Today clothing is considered a consumable item. Mass-manufactured clothing is less expensive than the labor required to repair it. Many people buy a new piece of clothing rather than spend time mending. The thrifty still replace zippers and Button (clothing), buttons and sew up ripped hems, however. Other mending techniques include darning and invisible mending.


Recycling

It is estimated that 80 billion to 150 billion garments are produced annually. Used, unwearable clothing can be repurposed for
quilt A quilt is a multi-layered textile, traditionally composed of two or more layers of fabric or fiber. Commonly three layers are used. These layers traditionally include a woven cloth top, a layer of padding, batting or wadding, and a woven ba ...

quilt
s, :wikt:rag, rags, Carpet, rugs, bandages, and many other household uses. Neutral colored or undyed cellulose fibers can be recycled into paper. In Western societies, used clothing is often thrown out or donated to charity (such as through a clothing bin). It is also sold to consignment shops, dress agencies, flea markets, and in online auctions. Also, used clothing often is collected on an industrial scale to be sorted and shipped for re-use in poorer countries. Globally, used clothes are worth $4 billion, with the U.S. as the leading exporter at $575 million. Synthetics, which come primarily from petrochemicals, are not renewable or biodegradable. Excess inventory of clothing is sometimes destroyed to preserve brand value.


Global trade

EU Member States import, in 2018 €166 billion of clothes; 51% come from outside the EU €84 billion. EU member states exported €116 billion of clothes in 2018, including 77% to other EU member states.


See also

* Children's clothing * Clothing fetish * Thermoregulation * Christian naturism#Timeline of requisite dress in Western civilization, Timeline of requisite dress in Western civilization * List of dresses, List of iconic dresses * Dress code * Western dress


References


Further reading

* ebook * * * * * Paperback * (see especially sections 5 – 'Clothing' – & 6 – 'Protective clothing'). *


External links


BBC Wiltshire
Dents Glove Museum
International Textile and Apparel Association
scholarly publications


Molecular Evolution of Pediculus humanus and the Origin of Clothing
by Ralf Kittler, Manfred Kayser and Mark Stoneking (.PDF file) {{Authority control Clothing, Articles containing video clips