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06-03-1999, 02:37 PM
Why do men and women's shirts button from opposite sides?




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06-03-1999, 02:42 PM
This dates back to a simpler time when women used to button men's shirts for them. SInce women were so accustomed to buttoning shirts in this "reversed" manner, womens button down shirts were manufactured to make it easier for the wearer to button them less awkwardly.

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To deal with men by force is as impractical as to deal with nature by persuasion.

06-03-1999, 02:46 PM
I heard that it was the men who buttoned their own shirts and it was the women who had their maids button their's.

06-03-1999, 02:50 PM
If the maids buttoned women's shirts, then why would it matter to the maid (a woman) which direction the shirts buttoned (unless the maid wore men's shirts)?

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To deal with men by force is as impractical as to deal with nature by persuasion.

06-03-1999, 02:51 PM
I remember hearing (admittedly, when I was like 10) that men's shirts were originally made to be easily unbuttoned with the left hand so that a man could remove (and therefore avoid soiling) his shirt in a duel, while simultaneously using his right hand to draw his weapon.

06-03-1999, 03:10 PM
Men's shirts button on the 'wrong' side so that we ladies can suductively undress them in the manner befitting sultry and vivacious women.

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"I think it would be a great idea" Mohandas Ghandi's answer when asked what he thought of Western civilization

06-03-1999, 04:53 PM
True or not, I think Lucky has the best answer.

06-03-1999, 04:54 PM
Oh, great - Lucky would post that while I'm wearing a pullover.

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The overwhelming majority of people have more than the average (mean) number of legs. -- E. Grebenik

06-03-1999, 06:19 PM
My mama always told me (and she reads lots of old Westerns so I always assumed she knew what she was talking about) that, in the old days of wagons and buggies, men usually sat on the right, women sat on the left, and their shirts buttoned in the directions that they do so that, if someone lost a button, the person of the opposite gender seated next to them couldn't see inside their shirt.

One sentence!

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"I hope life isn't a big joke, because I don't get it," Jack Handy

06-03-1999, 06:53 PM
Umm..this idea is more common but long time back, men used swords and they were on their left hip. With buttons on their right side, they wouldn't tangle themselves when they took out their sword.

Same thing for mens underpants. The flap won't get tangled [it opens on the right].

06-03-1999, 07:42 PM
[[Same thing for mens underpants. The flap won't get tangled [it opens on the right].]]

For a moment there I thought you were still talking about swords getting tangled up in the flap. Ow.

It's been a long day.

06-03-1999, 09:56 PM
PapaBear:
I heard that it was the men who buttoned their own shirts and it was the women who had their maids button their's.

BurnMeUp
If the maids buttoned women's shirts, then why would it matter to the maid (a woman) which direction the shirts buttoned (unless the maid wore men's shirts)?


This is the explanation that I heard as well. The reason that it matters is conspicuous consumption. Having the buttons the other ways shows that the woman can afford to have a maid. Men were expected to be less helpless and showed their financial power with other means.

Of course any one with half a brain cell can adapt to either style. But, back then, women weren't supposed to have that either :)

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Mastery is not perfection but a journey, and the true master must be willing to try and fail and try again

06-04-1999, 07:39 AM
I head the story about men's coats butteoning left over right because of the need to quickly draw a sword too; which begs the question of why women's shirts developed differently. What I hear was that it was to do with breast feeding and women prefering to start on the right side. Having no experience of breast feeding I cannot verify this though, anyone?

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It only hurts when I laugh.

06-04-1999, 10:08 AM
Bottle baby, eh, Moonshine? ;)

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The overwhelming majority of people have more than the average (mean) number of legs. -- E. Grebenik

06-07-1999, 06:02 AM
Can't rightly remember, but I'd be more than happy to do some field-work if anybody feels strongly about this. Anybody at all. Really.

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It only hurts when I laugh.

06-07-1999, 11:46 AM
As for womens shirts let me venture to guess that men like to sit to the left of them and its easier to open her shirt that way?