Ladies and Gentlemen of the well-dressed jury: Today, we turn our attention to two parts of your honorable person which you may not be accustomed to having examined in polite society. But, don’t be squeamish! It’s all in the name of fashion and comfort. Yes, today we look at your armpits and crotches.
Do you gusset? We do. In fact, at our staff meeting yesterday, 3 out of 5 of us were gusseted, although only two were willing to pose for the camera (above).
What is a gusset? Well, Webster says …
GUSSET: noun gus·set \ˈgə-sət\ a piece of cloth usually in the shape of a triangle that is sewn into something (such as the underneath part of a sleeve) to make it wider or stronger
We are no historians, but as far as we can tell, gussets came into being as a regular component of clothing in the 18th century, and have been used ever since, most recently in athletic, work, and outdoors clothes.
One of the reasons why Battenwear loves the gusset is that having that diamond or triangle of extra material sewn into an armpit or crotch is a really clever way to substantially increase the comfort of an item of clothing AND allow for much greater range of movement WITHOUT making the item appear bulky or baggy.
In other words, it’s a secret shared between the designer and the wearer … our way of saying, “C’mon, have this well-thought out, extra piece of fabric stuck where the sun don’t shine. Why settle for just looking this good, when you can be super comfortable at the same time?”
Where do we gusset? Definitely in our Sweats. Our short sleeve and long sleeve “Reach Up” sweatshirts get their name because the gusset in the armpit allows you to reach as high as you want without the waist hiking up. (We throw a gusset in on the Gym Jacket too, because that’s only right.)
We gusset up our pants and shorts, so that even if you are not that flexible or so inclined, in theory you COULD open your legs to a 180 degree angle in order to reach the next ledge in bouldering, pop the splits during break dancing, or just do some really aggressive man-spreading on the subway.
One of our favorite things is to watch someone trying on a pair of our pants for the first time, bend their legs and start moving around, just amazed at how comfortable they are.
Well, that’s the why and how of it. Gussets for All! Make Gussets Not War!
But before we bid you a fond adieu, here’s a little something we found when we were looking for photos of gussets: Shinya, as Tiger Mask, modeling a gusset back in 2012: