Friday, May 29, 2009

Pedaling Back In Time

By the 1890s, bicycles were the rage amongst men and women alike. One drawback for women was the long flowing skirts that were the fashion of the day. Impractical for riding bikes, some tried riding side saddle or mounted glorified tricycles, neither of which solved the problem. Before bloomers became popular, the fashion industry stepped up with split skirts, shown above, in the June 1897 issue of Ladies Standard Magazine. A far cry from the skin tight lycra suits prevalent these days, these skirts were considered quite daring in their day, and their widespread use allowed women to enjoy the pastime of bicycling. One of biking's big appeals for younger women was the freedom to pedal away from hovering chaperones.

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