Berlei Underwear Collection and Archive
The Berlei underwear collection contains underwear and corsetry from 1860 to the 1980s. It includes corsets, brassieres, underpants, girdles, stockings, suspender belts, maternity garments, surgical supports and samples.
The Berlei underwear collection contains underwear and corsetry from 1860 to the 1980s. It includes corsets, brassieres, underpants, girdles, stockings, suspender belts, maternity garments, surgical supports and samples. Most of the collection was designed and made by Berlei in either Australia or England. The archive includes annual reports, 1924-1969, conference agenda, speeches and reports, 1953-1961, reports and reviews, 1916-1961, legal and official documents, 1927-1969, 'Berlei Review', 1922-1955, 'Between ourselves at Berlei', 1947-1952, 'Staff Guide to Berlei', n.d., financial records, 1912-1969, sales and fitting manuals and leaflets, papers re anthropometrical survey, 1926-27, Design and Research Department files, 1940-1966, material re Berlei Type Indicator, photographs and other papers re Berlei Golden Jubilee, 1960 and books and pamphlets re underwear not published by Berlei, 1924-1957.
Berlei Ltd was a highly successful Australian international company that manufactured bras, corsets, underwear, medical support garments, girdles and suspender belts. The company played a major role in producing women's underwear that fitted the shape of the female body (and undertook the first anthropometric study of 6,000 Australian women in the 1926 National Census of Women's Measurements). The Berlei company is also significant for its progressive approach to business and marketing.
Some items in this collection may be subject to copyright
A selection of material is available on the Powerhouse Website. It has not been fully digitised and records contain varying levels of information. Further material is held at the museum. A PDF guide to the Berlei archive is available on the Powerhouse Website (P3645).
Archives; Business records; Underwear
Clothes manufacturing; Fashion; Women
United Kingdom; New Zealand; Australia