The Origin of Readyto Wear

During the reign of Charles II, according to Beverly Lemire, the ready-to-wear clothing industry originated when shipowners or the British navy ordered plain, coarse garments in quantity to outfit crews of English ships heading to sea on voyages lasting months or years. There were as yet no garment or textile factories in the modern sense. Garment production was controlled by (mostly) men who contracted with the government or shipping companies, bought materials in quantity and then hired workers who

"Demand" is not a quantity; it is the relationship between prices and how much consumers are willing to buy at various prices. If demand for a commodity is great, people will generally buy larger amounts of it at various prices than they will buy if demand is small.

took the supplies home with them to make the garments by hand. Workers were paid by the unit, and the contractors often cheated them. The system of subcontracting clothing production continues today.

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