Date: c. 1890s
Origin: United States
Machine knitted silk stockings, in a black base with decorative white stripes. Even with the lowered costs of machine knitting in the 19th century, silk remained an expensive fibre, and stockings like this pair remained luxury goods.
Stable and washable black dyes weren’t invented until the second half of the 19th century and first began to appear in undergarments worn against the skin until towards the end of the 19th century. Black became one of the most popular colours for stockings, being both fashionable and practical for the dirt on city streets.
From the collection of Karolina Laskowska