Costume and Textiles
Child's StaysMade in United States, North and Central America
Artist/maker unknown, American
Linen plain weave, baleen (whalebone), silk braided tape
* Costume and Textiles Study Gallery, Perelman Building, second floor
1988-15-1Purchased with the Bloomfield Moore Fund, 1988
LabelThis pair of stays is only eighteen inches around, and might have been worn by a small child of eighteen months to two years old. Putting stays on young girls and boys was not seen as harsh, but rather as insurance that their figures would develop the correct form, with chest out and shoulders down. While boys usually wore stays only in early childhood, they were considered essential for females throughout their lives.
* Works in the collection are moved off view for many different reasons. Although gallery locations on the website are updated regularly, there is no guarantee that this object will be on display on the day of your visit.