The Garter is a band worn to keep up a stocking, sock or chausses to the leg. Usually a garter is worn around the leg, but sometimes stockings are attached to other types of garments with garters (garter belt, corselet, sock braces, girdle, etc.).
The history of clothing on the legs (below the knee) dates back to the times of the Roman Empire, and more precisely to the conquests of Northern Europe, then the Roman soldiers began to wear “tibialis”, which were tied to the leg with cords. This manner of wearing is visible even in the early Middle Ages. When stockings or chausses (hose) began to be sewn fitting on the leg, they began to be fixed only under the knee or tied to a special belt, and then to a doublet. Almost until the end of the 19th century, nothing changed in garters. They were made of different materials: silk, lace, cotton, velvet, leather. If garters were visible (as in men’s fashion), then they were often complemented by jewelry and large bows.
The Most Noble Order of the Garter is an order of chivalry founded by Edward III of England in 1348. The legend tells of an embarrassment at a ball where a lady’s garter fell off, and the king picked it up and tied it to his leg. In many portraits of noble men, on the left leg, you can see this garter.
At the end of the 19th century, corsets with suspenders for stockings came into fashion. Also in fashion are garter belts, girdle and other types of underwear with the same suspenders (garters). They helped to avoid the problem of falling stockings, skirts were able to become shorter, and movements were free. When tights were invented, garter belts and garters became decorative and used for aesthetic purposes.