Monday, April 26, 2010

Rainbow Underwear

I was folding my laundry yesterday when I realized I only had two pieces that were white. Everything else was colored. Mostly brightly colored. Now I'm not anywhere near the age of the underwear models with their perky breasts and flat bellies. Matter of fact, I'm...older. Well, all right, I confess I'm likely old enough to be their grandma.

Anyway, I started thinking about how underwear styles have changed during my lifetime. When I was a very young girl, white cotton knit panties were pretty much the style. As I added a few years on, I also wore a white knit camisole. (I always think that camisole is such a feminine word. Too bad it isn't used much anymore.)

Around thirteen, I graduated to a white cotton bra. Some of you are old enough to remember the kind that had concentric rings of stitching and came to a sharp point. No woman on earth was shaped like that, but there you go. It was the style. So millions of women wore bras shaped like breastplates.

When I married at eighteen, the first thing I did was buy colored underwear. No, nothing daring. No black. No red. As I recall, what was available in those colors back then was very expensive. I bought dainty flowered items in this awful cheap silky fabric that dried out in the dryer and frayed. After a few washings, it felt like shredded plastic.

Over the next few years, I went through several phases. Pale colors. Silky. Stretchy. (Yeah, I was pregnant for several centuries so there was a lot of stretchy in there. And for some reason, they didn't make maternity underwear in any color except white. Seems like they would have made color just to cheer the mom-to-be because for darn sure it's tough to feel sexy while carrying around a watermelon in your belly.) And...back to cotton.

The difference now is the wide variety of styles, colors, prints, and thank goodness!!! sizes. I have sports bras in red, gray, blue, black, pink, turquoise and beige. Panties range from black to purple to green to gray. What I find amusing is I never pay attention to what color undies I have on. If both pieces match, it's by sheer accident. If they come close to matching my outer wear, then that's obviously intervention from God.

Women aren't the only ones that enjoy colored underwear. Men have an astonishing variety of colors and fabrics and styles to choose from. Children have a wonderful selection that includes styles with Barbie and Batman and Spongebob.

Remember the old days when you added bleach to the underwear washload? Heh. No more. Do people still have any white laundry? I remember my mother also adding something called bluing to the laundry. I wonder if anyone still uses that? Come to think of it, what the heck was it supposed to do?

At our house, we toss all the laundry in together. Dark colors together and all the light colors in another load. And once in a while we have enough for a white load. But not often.

Now we have all the colors of the rainbow.



  1. Bleach tends to add a slightly yellow tinge over time and bluing adds a faintly cool tone that counteracts that. Yes, we still use it in my house--we have white sheets and a white duvet cover. I also have several white tops, and the dh, who is a bit of a clothes horse, keeps his white dress shirts pristine.

  2. Ahhhh. Forgot about dress shirts!

  3. Socks are my main source of white laundry, as well as white T shirts, turtlenecks,sweaters, and nicer shirts.

    I went through a phase in my thirties where the only time I felt sexy was if I was wearing matching undies. Now it's whatever I pull out of the drawer...and thankfully now I'm finally wearing a bra which FITS PROPERLY again:) And occasionally I'll pull out the red lace ones...along with the black slimmee...

  4. My daughter loves skulls and I found underwear at Sears with skulls. Unfortunately they weren't her size as she really wanted them.

    Last Valentine's Day I ran across of Scooby Doo boxer shorts and got them for my youngest who loves SD. I wasn't sure he'd want to wear them but it turns out he loves them.

    Styles sure have changed since I was a kid.

  5. My stepmother, God love her, wore the breast missile bras until the day she passed. I was always afraid she'd take someone's eye out with those things.

    I've discovered that the matching bra and panties is considered just good grooming among many Southern women. During a girl chat one day, they were shocked to learn that us Yankees really didn't pay much attention to it.

  6. Camisoles are very much a part of today's wardrobe.They too come on a variety of styles and colors.

  7. Just for the record... I still only wear white underwear. I try some other colors but I came back to the white. Boxer or brief? Well... aren't we suppose to leave something to the imagination?