You’ll become the party’s life if you put on a pair of classic traditional lederhosen. Leather pants worn by Bavarian men (and sometimes women) are one of the world’s most gorgeous outfits, whether you like them or not. Lederhosen is a type of clothing worn in southern Bavaria and Austria.
Until a few years ago, Germans from Berlin or Cologne would not have been seen over in a couple, save at the Munich Oktoberfest. However, how did lederhosen become so popular?
Let’s look at the history of traditional German clothing.
Traditional German Clothing:
Lederhosen, as we know and relish it today, dates back to the 1700s. Leather pants were rather general among peasants in Europe for farm work, horseback riding, and hunting.
In the 1800s, leather hose went out of style for a spell as cotton or cloth pants took their place.
In 1883, an upstart named Joseph Vogel spearheaded a renaissance when he and his pub mates united to oppose the loss of Bavarian ideals.
Pants made of fur or animal hide have a long history dating back to Otzi the Iceman, a 5,300-years old frozen mummy discovered near the Alpine Austro-Italian border in 1991.
Graf walked around Manhattan in his lederhosen until he died in 1967. Because Europe’s elite enjoyed dressing up as peasants for fun back then, lederhosen became popular among all social classes.
Poorer people colored goat or sheep skin black for their “Bundhosen” style pants, which were either short or full length. The nobility was the first to wear the silky, brown lederhosen made of wool.
Shorts were regarded as an affront to decorum by the priesthood, who attempted to have them prohibited. It paired these pants with coarse linen or wool shirts and sweaters. Germans also wore wool stockings and country shoes with pants. Jackets and caps are various depending on the locale and the occasion.
Traditional German clothing is often knee-length and worn by working-class men with rustic shoes and wool socks. These days, lederhosen are mostly worn at beer festivals and other cultural events, such as Oktoberfest. However, in ultra-traditional towns like Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Bavarians can still be seen wearing traditional lederhosen as everyday attire.
Bavarian writer Oskar Maria Graf, who fled to New York during the Third Reich, was one of the most famous lederhosen supporters in the 1900s. Graf walked around Manhattan in lederhosen until 1967, when he died.
Nowadays, lederhosen are mostly worn at beer festivals and other cultural events, such as Oktoberfest.
Parts of Traditional Lederhosen:
Bavarians still wear lederhosen as everyday attire. However, while females in leather shorts are a new addition to Oktoberfest, female farmhands and milkmaids have been wearing lederhosen for centuries.
If you don’t want to seem like a chicken suit in a church, don’t wear sneakers with your lederhosen, or traditional Bavarian shoes, which are usually brown and are supposed to be inspired by a goat’s hoof.
It can be knee-length, ankle-length, or Loferl-style and is commonly cream or grey. Loferls have an extra band across the calves and are ankle-length.
Plain shirts with lederhosen or have a checkered design in blue or red. Embroidery and bone buttons are frequently used on white or cream shirts.
A Chiavari chain is sometimes worn over the top of the flap with lederhosen. It can use old coins, animal teeth, and other lucky charms to embellish Chiavari. A little pocket knife, also known as a Trachtenmesser, is frequently carried in the side pocket.
Older men frequently wear green or black felt hats, which are sometimes embellished with emblems or, more famously, a Gamsbart, a chamois’ beard.
Janker is the name given to traditional German lederhosen jackets, which are usually green, brown, or grey and have a narrow green collar.
If you’ve ever attended an Oktoberfest celebration anywhere in the world, you’re familiar with lederhosen and dirndls. Lederhosen, which translates to “leather trousers,” is a type of short leather pants worn by males.
However, in Austria and Bavaria, traditional German clothing, like dirndls and lederhosen, is usually worn at festivals and celebrations. The dirndl was the standard uniform of servant girls or rural lady workers in the 19th century.