are a type of
lingerie and are sometimes
called "tap pants", i.e. tap-dancing pants. The term is
predominantly used in the
UK to describe a type of underwear
worn from the hip. They cover the hip, most of the upper thigh and
all of the buttocks, and are denominated by the 'open leg' style,
or loose fitting leg. They do not have elasticated leg cuffs, but
allow a pleated, more comfortable fit. The style may have straight
cut leg cuffs with or without trimming, or the leg cuffs may be
bias cut to a degree.
not to be confused with "hipsters' or "briefs", or "bikini
bottoms" and "boyshorts",
all of which feature elasticated leg openings and much snugger fit
to the body.
knickers should only be worn with
A-Line type skirts and free-flowing
dresses, which require freedom of movement without the visible panty
line (VPL), because the french knickers would give a smooth appearance
underneath the fabric of the clothing aforementioned, therefore
suitable for day wear or evening outfits for this reason.
of French Knickers
may have been so called since they were mimicry of the 'visible'
associated with Parisienne dancing, notably the Can-Can. The French themselves
do not use this term for this style. The English began to associate the
term with naughty or risque activity due to the connection to Montmartre
and Pigalle, but in reality these knickers evolved into their final form
bloomers, the baggy, shapeless long-legged
underwear of the
Victorian era. By the 1950s French
knickers were almost the standard for British women and by the sixties this
style was mass-produced in the 'new' nylon and other synthetic fabrics.
A more practical design of French knickers had arrived, and proved very
In the mid to
late 1970s French Knickers, designed by Janet Reger and others, brought
erotic and exotic style to lingerie. Of course major manufacturers through
the 1980s to present day latched on to the trends.
Since the nineties,
this style of lingerie has given ground in the marketplace to more aggressive
styles for younger consumers. It becomes harder for major manufacturers
to justify annual production, so they do not appear in shops at all often.
They continue to hold the affection and attention of the generation who
grew up with them, and as a result have transitioned back into the 'naughty'
side of lingerie.
What are knickers?
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