Monday, September 5, 2016

Look for the Union Label

Thanks to legions of union garment workers, we once had a thriving clothing industry in the United States, now mostly off-shored. In the 1950s for instance, most of what was available to wear in the U.S. was made in the U.S., from the raw materials to the textiles, designs and finally to the finished products. Union tags will let you know that fairly-paid garment workers (primarily women) made the items.

By comparison: Green America’s Retailer Scorecard gives Wal-Mart an F, J.C. Penney a D-, and Target a D+ for their use of sweatshops and forced child labor. In choosing a vintage article you not only recycle it for current use, but you can be fairly confident that it was made with better values in its day.

The delivery may be outdated in this 1978 ad, but the message sounds right on now:

Look for the union label

When you are buying a coat, dress or blouse.

Remember somewhere our union’s sewing

our wages going to feed the kids and run the house,

We work hard but who’s complaining.

Thanks to the I.L.G. we’re paying our way.

So, always look for the union label,

it says we’re able
to make it in the U.S.A.

You can still look for those union labels in vintage clothing.

Just a few of the choices at denisebrain this week (click any photo for more on the item):

Don’t forget the benefit of a union label in narrowing down the date of your vintage item. Visit the Vintage Fashion Guild’s ILGWU page for the scoop on a number of union labels and their dates. 


Anonymous said...

Thank you for another great post! And Happy 10th Anniversary as well!

denisebrain said...

Thank you Denise!!