Coat hangers

miniature coathanger
© F H Powell 2010

Now a common sight in any wardrobe, the humble coat or clothes hanger is a little over 100 years old. O A North of Connecticut filed a patent for a coat hook as early as 1869. However the employees of the Timberlake Wire and Novelty Company of Michigan complained there were insufficient coat hooks for them, so Albert J. Parkhouse another employee, bent a piece of wire into a wishbone shape complete with a twisted hook. It was 1903 and subsequently Parkhouse patented his “wire coat hanger”. Strangely the patent was assigned to John B. Timberlake, the owner of the company for which Parkhouse worked.

By 1906 Meyer May, mens clothes retailer was the first to use the coat hanger to display his clothes for sale. Wood was an alternative material but the basic design remained the same. In 1932 an improvement on the basic design that used cardboard tubes on the upper shoulders and lower bar that helped prevent wrinkles. From this concept came the idea of padding the hangers with materials such as satin to protect expensive clothes from shoulder dents.

We have some rather pretty satin and lace coat hangers for ladies and babies in 1:12th scale on our web shop.