Date: c. 1956
Origin: Great Britain
An advertisement for the ‘Maidenette’ line of bras. The model is shown reclining in a field of flowers, with the product prominently on display. The ‘I dreamed…’ series of Maidenform advertisements was conceived in 1949, and were so wildly successful that they ran until 1969. They depicted models in a range of mundane and fantastical situations, from everyday shopping to hunting tigers.
Maidenform was founded in the USA as a women’s underwear manufacturer in 1922. The brand was started by seamstress Ida Rosenthal, her husband William, and Enid Bissett, the owner of the shop that employed Ida. The brand initially specialised in supportive bras and foundationwear that accentuated the natural shape, rather than the compression bandeau that was the fashion of the period. The patent for this particular bra was filed by William Rosenthal.
Maidenform continue to trade today and has been owned by Hanesbrand since 2013. They are one of the largest producers of shapewear and are sold worldwide.
From the collection of The Underpinnings Museum