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What are you wearing to bed tonight?

Where did the idea of wearing a special uniform to bed originate from? Let’s go back to the 18th Century when Europeans visiting Persia noticed an unusual habit. It seems folks there were wearing something known as “pajama’s,” which means leg garment in Persian. Pants tied at the waist with a drawstring and paired with a tunic, which was also belted at the waist, were worn by men and women. Curious Europeans took the look home with them, making them the pioneers of our modern PJ-loving craze.

In the 1920s, French designer Coco Chanel modernized pajamas. Taking them out of the bedroom, she created a style she called “Beach Pajamas.” They raised eyebrows at the time since the baggy garb was both gender-bending and suggestive of boudoir behavior. Regardless, others followed suit and sported them while lounging at resorts along the Cote d’Azur. England caught on and daytime pajamas were suddenly acceptable attire. It was a fashion for “Evening Pajamas” that took hold in the 1930s, a new type of attire for hostesses of an informal (yet elegant) evening at home. Think Greta Garbo or Marlene Dietrich.

After the Second World War, the shine on pajamas wore off until the free-loving 1960s and the emergence of “Palazzo Pajamas” (a term coined by Vogue editor, Diana Vreeland) from Italian designer Irene Galitzine. These outfits with wide, flowing pants and loose-fitting tops, were again considered appropriate for a hostess to wear while entertaining guests in the evening.

In the 1970s, Halston designed pantsuits that he described as “Pajama Dressing.” His versions were indicative of the unisex fashion trend. Satin jammies, once popular in the 1920s, made a comeback. They were so comfortable and easy to wear that they caught on and soon they were all the rage – everywhere. Shop at www.luxnightwear.com


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