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The History of Cardigans

The cardigan is named after the 7th Earl of Cardigan, James Thomas Brudenell. Lord Cardigan led the Charge of the Light Brigade during the Crimean War and was known for wearing a short, woolen sleeveless waistcoat trimmed in fur to stay warm during the failed military campaign. After the war, the knitwear item became popular outside the military and as a result, cardigan sweaters were widely produced for men. Then in the 1920s, Coco Chanel popularized the cardigan for women. Chanel claimed that she personally preferred button-down cardigans to pullover sweaters because cardigans didn’t muss her hair. Since then, cardigans have become a style staple and have been seen on everyone from the Queen of England to Taylor Swift. In addition to their preppy, classic appeal, cardigans also became a symbol of counterculture after famous icons like Kurt Cobain began to wear them. Today, cardigans remain an extremely versatile fashion staple and are almost universally popular.

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