The Story Behind The Elbow Patch You Never Wanted To Know.

Now I know what you’re thinking. Weeks of nothing on this blog- and now this: a post about elbow patches. But let’s face it, there probably won’t be another post for at least a fortnight- so I’d take it if I were you. Am I going to justify weeks of no uploads? No.

The other day, a friend and I went to Harry Potter World in London, and had a great time. During a long conversation over a butterbeer- our attention was drawn to elbow patches (which they were wearing as a feature of their outfit). As we sat among the myriad of magical mysteries- we asked- what are they? Where do they come from? What do they want? All these questions had to be answered soon. Apparently.

Magic Is Might statue at the warner bros studio tour London…

Elbow patches first came to the scene in America in the early 1920s. When college students found their favourite jackets (which were near exclusive to the 20s young elite) were wearing out quicker than they liked. This was mainly down to tears in the arm fabric due to movement when writing (as materials were also less durable then). Students quickly began wearing leather elbow pads- which protected their jackets arms from usual wear and tear. It caught on, and quickly became a staple in the fashion industry (for the 1920s liberal elite).

But away from the world of fashion, a war was developing- between Adolf Hitler and the Nazis in Germany, and Churchill- with British and American allied forces. Out on the battlefield, it seemed even more important that troops had adequate protection from wear and tear of the uniform- and also the added benefit of added warmth. Our faithful friend the elbow patch was called to the scene once again.


You can still see what’s left of this once thriving existence: on the corner of a shelf in H&M, or in the Peter Symonds College Music Department. Some trends become less mainstream, but never cease to exist entirely. Well, that’s all for a few weeks now probably. If you want more until then, I suggest you read wired.co.uk- and give Ordinry Author the credit for all of the articles...

Thumbnail credit: Honestly WTF

 

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