1910 Men's Brown Wool Cycling Suit


1910 men's bicycle suit in a light and dark brown wool plaid consists of jacket, knickerbockers/knee pants and pair of wool socks. The jacket is a three-button jacket with keyhole buttonholes and Bakelite tortoise shell buttons, a high notch lapel and set in two-piece sleeves. The style of the suit, particularly the jacket, carries all of the trademarks of men's fashion typical of the early 18th century. The jacket has four patch pockets, two breast pocket and two hip pockets, all pockets are covered with a flap. The two breast pocket flaps close with a button. The jacket is unlined and seams are bound in the Hong Kong style.
This suit was altered at least once, rather poorly, to fit a smaller man. This can be seen at the center front of the jacket, which is slightly cut away and poorly stitched back, and the back of the jacket hem looks as if it was raised as well. The sleeve hems were also taken up, again very poorly done, even sloppy, with large hand stitches that show on the outside of the sleeve.
The knickerbockers, or knee pants, are made in the same wool plaid as the jacket and are the distinctive feature that makes this a bicycle suit. Knickerbockers, worn by both men and women were designed to be worn on bicycles, keeping the leg of the pants away from the wheels, gears and pedals of the bicycle. They close at the center front with a four-button fly and a pant hook and eye at the waistband. The inseam side pockets close with one button in the center and have bar tacks top and bottom for reinforcement. The center back crotch seam is not like a typical trouser crotch seam, instead it has a cotton or linen tape overstitched on top of the seam allowance. With the exception of the fly, the buttons on the pants do not match the buttons on the jacket. They look newer. There is a double welt watch pocket on the right side of the front of the pants.
The waistband is faced in black, white and brown plaid cotton.
The fit of the pants is adjusted with a fabric belt tab and two prong metal buckle at center back of the waist. There are four large belt loops, two front and two back, and one double welt back pocket with flap and button. There is a seat pad sewn to the pants from inseam up the center back crotch seam. The hem of the pants are made of a light brown wool band about four inches wide, and closes at the side seam with three buttons in keyhole button holes.
The knit stocking are made of black wool with a stirrup instead of a whole foot, and a fold over cuff with an argyle pattern in off white wool.




This ensemble was purchased at auction.

Design Elements

Knickers/knee Pants, Sport Suit Jacket, Notched Lapel

Fiber/Fabric Information

fiber content=Wool




Brown light


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“1910 Men's Brown Wool Cycling Suit,” Fashion2Fiber, accessed May 28, 2018,

Item Relations

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