Lilla Bényi's writing
Pockets on women's clothing carry an extremely important message, as they ensure women's independence and also symbolize gender equality. In order to see this better, we need to study the history of fashion, which reveals the significant aspects of women's politics.
Predecessors of pockets can also be considered the small-sized containers hung on ropes that were common in the Middle Ages, which enabled women and men to carry their smaller items with them. A bigger innovation took place in the 17th century, because they started to sew these pouches inside the clothes, in order to hide personal items - so pockets were actually born, and with them the emphasis on traditional gender roles through pockets.
These pockets were easily accessible for men (they were placed on jackets, vests, and trousers), while they were difficult for women to access, under their petticoats. Women were therefore not allowed to disclose their personal belongings until the end of the 18th century, when the use of reticles became widespread. However, these small decorative bags were not suitable for storing money and valuables - according to this, women do not need functional pockets because they do not have access to wealth.
At the turn of the 20th century, however, women's desire for independence became stronger, and among others, campaigns were created under the leadership of the Rational Dress Society which fought for a rethinking of women's clothing. The "suffragette costume" with many pockets also became popular at that time, the name of which also proclaims the feminist point of view - a suffragette was the name given to a woman who stood up and fought for the political equality of women, the first for her right to vote. After the world wars, it became necessary for women to go to work, so the promotion of the working woman ideal came to the fore, which clearly required more practical clothing - trousers and large pockets.
It is already clear from this that the pockets are adapted to the current images of women, in the shaping of which social politics actually play the biggest role. This is well demonstrated by the fact that as soon as industry needed less female labor, governments began to promote the work that women did for free in the household. As a result, traditional gender roles came to the fore, and pockets also adapted to it. Unfortunately, in most cases still small pockets can be found on women's clothing.
At Printa, in addition to functionality, we also keep women's independence in mind when we design large pockets for women's pieces.
You can find these women's products in this collection.