All hands on deck for this vintage toy wood boat. They say the suit makes the man and I think the uniform makes the sailor. I like this vintage boat but the miniature sailors make it even better. The traditional sailor uniform is all white but it also has something that I once wore in the 1970’s. Bell bottom jeans. I had a favorite pair of bell bottoms that I probably wore too long before washes. But I liked the large flair at the bottom and sailors do too. But for different reasons.
Vintage Toy Wood Boat
Non officer sailors have been wearing bell bottoms since the early 1800’s but they didn’t become the official regulation uniform of the Navy until 1897. They were described as pants that were cut bell shaped and wide enough to be pulled over the thighs. You might ask why they needed to be pulled over the thighs. Easy answer. The pants needed to be rolled up to keep them dry during wading in water or swabbing the deck. In fact, it was a Navy regulation that pants had to be rolled up while cleaning the deck. Makes sense but how about just looking good in your bell bottom pants. Not sure the Navy cared. Sailor pants also needed to be wide so that they could be easily pulled off over boots. This could come in handy if you’re suddenly thrown overboard and needed to swim to safety. It’s said that the large bell at the bottom could also be inflated to act as a life preserver. Hopefully, that never had to be tested in real life. But my favorite use of the bell bottom for sailors was to smuggle alcohol onto the ship. Apparently, tying bottles to your calf goes unnoticed under bell bottom pants. Now that could come in handy for any of us. Unfortunately, the supply of sailor bell bottom pants ran out in 1998 and is no longer considered the fashion statement it once was. Maybe that had something to do with the end of Disco too. Ship ahoy.