A doublet is a close-fitting jacket with a button-fastened front opening. It was worn over a shirt or drawers and was waist or hip length. Doublets frequently have a V-shaped opening at the waist. The word "doublet" comes from the French doublier, meaning "to wear around the waist."
The doublet was commonly worn by noblemen and officers in Europe from about 1400 to 1600. They were usually made of linen or cotton and had buttons or velveteen linings. Doublets for men were also called jerkins in England and Germany. In Italy they were called scapulae (from which we get the word "scapular").
Men's doublets had large lapels that could be folded back to allow for greater freedom of movement. This type of jacket was most popular between 1560 and 1620. After that time, it became unfashionable and was replaced by the frock coat.
Women wore doublets under their gowns or dresses. They were often made of velvet or satin and came to match the wearer's clothes color-wise. A woman would wear a different doublet for each day of the week so that her husband would not become bored with wearing the same thing every day.
There are many pictures in history books of famous people wearing doublets.
Doublets were long-sleeved, featured standing neckbands, and were tied at the center front with lacing or buttons. Early doublets were close-fitting clothes designed to draw attention to a man's physique; they nipped in at the waist and had short skirts beneath. Later in history, men began wearing looser-fitting garments called jerkins that covered the doublet entirely.
In English law, a doublet is a short coat worn by men. It originated as a sleeveless garment with tight sleeves attached to it. Today, it usually has flaps or panels that extend from the shoulders to the elbow or wrist. The word comes from old French doublier to cover with a double layer of cloth, and therefore, it was made of two pieces of cloth sewn together.
Men's doublets can be identified by certain features including collar, sleeve, and shoulder design. Collar designs include round, pointed, winged, and branched. Sleeve designs include straight, pleated, buttoned, embroidered, and printed. Doublets with large panes of glass in the shoulder area are also popular among modern men who like to show off their muscles.
During the 11th century, doublets became more fitted around the waist, and by the early 13th century, they had become quite narrow. By the late 15th century, they had again started to grow wider again.
Until the end of the 15th century, the doublet was normally worn in public under another piece of clothing like a gown, cloak, overtunic, or jerkin. It began as a simple sewn and quilted liner ("doubling") worn beneath a hauberk or cuirass to minimize bruising and chafing. Over time, the doubling became so popular that it became necessary to manufacture it from stronger material. Modern scholars believe the first doublets were made of silk, but earlier ones were probably made of linen or hemp.
The earliest known picture showing the doublet alone comes from the Paris Museum of Fine Arts and dates back to 1450. In this painting by Jean Froissart, a knight is seen wearing only his doublet while standing next to his horse at a tournament. The fact that he is not wearing any armor underneath his clothes indicates that the doublet had become popular enough that no one needed to wear it over armor anymore.
In Europe, the doublet came to be regarded as the everyday armor for men. A gentleman would wear armor when going to war or into battle, but otherwise he would rely on his skills and his honor to defend himself. This change happened around 1350. Before then, knights wore armor all the time even when they weren't going to war; they just liked having something between their skin and the elements.
The doublet spread to other parts of the world later. It reached Asia before 1500 and America before 1750.
The doublet was the predominant top garment worn by males from the 15th through the 17th century. It was a padded jacket with a waist that was worn over a shirt. Its forefather, the gipon, was a garment worn beneath armour that reached almost to the knees at first. It was originally made of linen or hemp and often had a hood attached to it for extra protection during battle.
In time, the doublet became more tailored to fit properly and allow freedom of movement. It could be made of velvet or cloth of any color other than black. By the 18th century, it was merely a jacket with sleeves and a collar. The male fashion plate of about 1770 shows a doublet with red stripes and a buttoned front. It is difficult to tell if there is a waist underneath the coat, but there certainly appears to be a lot of space around the chest.
During this era, men were required to wear a sword when out of doors. This was usually done by attaching the scabbard to their side using a belt. When not in use, the sword was kept inside the house. Swords were made of steel at first, but later ones contained silver or gold threads which made them much more expensive. A man would need several swords because they usually lasted only for one season before they needed to be replaced.
Inside the house, weapons were used as decorations.
The doublet fulfilled the same role for 300 years: to offer fashionable shape and cushioning to the body, to support the hose by giving ties, and to provide warmth to the body. Only the style and cut of the doublet have altered throughout its existence. It was still being made in the 16th century.
Men started wearing doublets for protection against injury at work (especially due to heavy loads). They also wanted to look good and attract women's attention. Wearing a doublet showed that you were well off enough to be able to afford one. This also proved that you were a man who took his personal appearance seriously - an important factor for success in your career and in finding true love!
The main difference between modern-day clothes for men and those from centuries past is materiality. Back then, men wore linen or wool while today they usually prefer cotton. The quality of materials has improved so much that people now expect their clothes to last longer than just a few seasons. Modern men's clothing is generally cheaper too; you can get a great doublet for $100 or less. In fact, there are many different styles of doublets available for all budgets, from cheap imitations to high-end custom-made ones.
In conclusion, men wore doublets because they were fashionable and it was cold.
The term "doublet" alludes to the shirt's dual layers of cloth. The inside lining was typically linen, while the outer layer was strong silk. These layers are filled with varying degrees of bombast, or padding, depending on the current vogue. The doublet is usually made with two identical fronts and one identical back piece that are joined at the center front and the center back.
The doublet became popular in the 15th century and remained so fashionable that it was often seen in art. It is believed that the invention of the sewing machine may have helped cause its decline as a newer, more affordable garment was available.
Today, the doublet still makes an appearance in high-end men's clothing, especially when worn by actors playing historical figures. Often, they will be embroidered with details specific to dress of the period they are representing.
The doublet is made today almost entirely for entertainment purposes. There are few people who would claim them as their favorite garment because of their extensive nature. However, those who do love them say they provide full coverage from the neck down while still allowing for freedom of movement.
Overall, the doublet is a versatile item that can be dressed up or down based on context. They are not easy to make so only experienced sewers should attempt them.