Primitive man used leaves and animal hides as forms of clothing. This was done mainly to cover the private and vulnerable parts. Due to the thousands of years of civilization and development, we now wear clothes of varying designs, styles, materials and colours. Clothes are now not only to cover private areas, we use them to make statements of fashion, style and elegance.
Since we need to remove and replace our clothing from time to time, there was a need to ensure the process is easy. This led to the innovation of clothing fasteners.
Clothing fasteners ensure our clothes are firmly fitted when worn and also make the removal process easy since they are temporary. While strap-like materials addressed such needs in the dark ages, quite a number of modern innovations are available today.
Though a lot of today’s fasteners have spent some decades or centuries with us, newer trends keep emerging every other day. Find below the clothing fasteners of today’s generation and newer trends for your fashion delight.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines zipper as “a device that is made of two rows of metal or plastic teeth and another piece that slides over the teeth to make them fit together or come apart and that is used to fasten clothing, open or close bags, etc.”
From the definition, we can derive the types of zippers namely plastic and metal. One other type is coil zippers. The main components of a zipper are the teeth, slider and puller. Though around for about two centuries now, the zipper keeps getting new designs to match modern-day requirements. Newer zipper design types include invisible zippers, waterproof zippers, open-ended zippers, magnetic zippers and airtight zippers.
Buttons are arguably the oldest and most utilized form of modern fasteners, you would say. Buttons are now mostly made of plastic but you can also find metal and wood buttons albeit, rarely.
There are mainly two kinds of buttons and this classification is based on their application in fabrics. They are Sew-through buttons and Shank buttons. Sew-through-buttons have holes through which threads are inserted to secure them to the fabric by sewing.
Shank buttons, on the other hand, have plastic or metal shanks which provide a small amount of space between the button and the fabric and allows the button to sit in without straining the fabric.
As well as plastic, buttons can be made of lac, pearl, wax, bone, horn, shell, rock, and many other materials.
Velcro (Hook and Loop Fasteners)
Hook and loop fasteners, commonly called Velcro, are fasteners consisting of two strips of nylon fabric, which adhere when pressed together. The two components (hook and loop) work via a method in which the hook catches in the loops and the two pieces bind temporarily during the time they are pressed together. A mid-nineteenth century invention, they are commonly used in outer garments and sportswear.
Snaps (Press Studs)
Snaps are inarguably the easiest of all fasteners. Snaps are a pair of interlocking discs used to fasten clothes. They are very easy to take on and off and are therefore used largely in baby clothes and outerware, such as wintercoats and jeans. These buttons come in two parts, the ball half and the socket half, to snap together.
A brooch is a decorative item with a catch and a pin, often fastened to clothes to hold them closed. Brooches are more of a decorative fastener and are made of metal, often silver and gold. They are often festooned with gems and pictorial decorations.