Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Everybody knows what gloves are - they are garments covering hands. They have separate openings for each finger and the thumb. Gloves protect hands against cold, heat or chemicals. They can also be guards for what we should not touch.

White Lace Wedding Gloves by darkponydesigns

Gloves have lots of practical purposes. They're worn daily by lots of different commercial and industrial professional as well as athletes. Latex ones are used by healthcare professionals. Criminals may wear them to avoid leaving fingerprints. But we're here all about fashion so let's not forget that they can also be worn just for vanity reasons or to make a fashion statement.

Gloves go way back. According to some translations of The Odyssey, Laertes is describes as wearing gloves while walking in his garden. There are mentions of use of gloves among the Romans.

Mouse Hand Warmers by WarmYourself

They didn't began being worn by ladies as a fashion ornament until the 13th century. They were made of linen and silk and sometimes reached all the way to the elbow. A Paris guild of glovers made them in skin and fur.

They reached their greatest elaboration in the 16th century when Queen Elizabeth I set the fashion for wearing the gloves richly embroidered and jewelled, and for putting them on and taking them off during audiences, to draw attention to her beautiful hands.

Fingerless mittens by Danfe

Have you ever wondered how many different styles of gloves there are? Here are the main ones:

1. Fingerless - they have openings for each finger and thumb but no covering.

2. Gauntlets - are fingerless gloves with one large opening rather than individual ones for each finger.
3. Mittens - are gloves that cover the entire hand or fist but do not have separate openings for each finger.

4. Hybrid gloves and mittens are the ones that are fingerless but also have a convertible compartment that can be pulled over the bare fingers to enclose them.

5. Formal wear gloves - come in 3 lengths: wrist ("matinee"), elbow and opera (full length). They can be satin or lace.

Vintage sheer gloves by VeraVague

Who would think there was so much to such a simple accessory? Remember this though next time you put your gloves on: Whether you're going biking in your fingerless gloves, putting on mittens before hitting the slopes or the pretty satin black gloves while going to the opera - back in the day they had sumptuary laws to restrain this vanity for example against perfumed gloves in Rome in 1560:)

Leather gloves by gaboo

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