The Lane Bryant Company was founded by Lena Himmelstein https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lena_Himmelstein originally from Lithuania. Widowed and with a young child, she worked as a dressmaker in a sweatshop in New York. Borrowing 300 dollars from her brother-in-law, she rented a small shop on fifth ave. with the money and lived in the back of the shop. Originally, Lena, who became known as a Lane, designed custom-made maternity dresses. One customer asked her to design a dress that she could wear in public. This design had an elastic waistband and pleated skirt which was innovative for 1910 era. This is said to have been the first commercially sewn maternity dress. This dress became her best selling garment.
In 1910, Lane married Albert Malsin, who streamlined her accounting and costs. However, marketing was still an issue because pregnancy was not discussed in public. However, they were able to convince one newspaper to carry an ad. When the ad appeared, her entire stock sold out the very next day.
After WWI, 1918, Lane saw that there was no mass produced clothing for plus sized women. So Lane's company expanded into this market. By 1923, the company exploded with sales reaching 5 million.
Lane and her husband founded a mail order catalog in 1917 to carry their maternity and plus size lines.
Lane Bryant customer service was unbelievable. Working with the Red Cross, Lane replaced clothing for customers who had clothing destroyed in a disaster.
Lane died in 1951 and her son's took over the business. In 1982, The Limited, bought the company.
Vintage 1960 Cotton Dress with Bolero Jacket and belt.