Hanes HosieryIf one is looking for hosiery which is American born and bred, Hanes is the obvious answer. The company has genuine American roots and a genuine American record too. It has been one of the trailblazers of the pantyhose/hosiery industry, and despite the up and coming European brands, which dominate most of the US market quality-wise these days, Hanes has remained a household pantyhose brand all over the country.
The company was founded way back in 1901, by John Wesley Hanes, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The name of the facility where the company made men’s socks in the beginning was Shamrock Mills. That changed in 1914, when the name became Hanes Hosiery Mills Co.
1918 marked a major milestone in the history of the company: that was when the transition from men’s socks to women’s socks was made. Hanes was among the first companies which recognized the immense potential in women’s nylon hosiery when nylon was invented in 1938. The company was also among the trailblazers in hosiery research and its contribution to the 1960s appearance of seamless pantyhose shouldn’t be understated.
The original founder of the company, John Wesley Hanes, was sold on hosiery, but his brother, P.H. Hanes started a men’s underwear company, known as Hanes Knitting Company. The two companies eventually merged in 1965, after both had gone through periods of incredible growth. Thus, Hanes Corporation was born.
By the mid-1960s, the company’s retail chain was all set up and established. That’s when Hanes decided to take a gamble on a new product: L’eggs. The pantyhose inside the by-now-classic egg-shaped packaging were an instant hit with customers. It was one of those “perfect storm” products, which had all the right circumstances working in its favor: besides the innovative packaging, the quality and the price of these pantyhose created a combination of incentives, which women all over the country proved powerless to resist.
Eventually, due to its enormous success, L’eggs became a separate entity within Hanes Corporation in 1972.
1979 saw the current owner of the entire Hanes portfolio come into the picture. The Sarah Lee Hosiery company, based in Winston-Salem, NC acquired the company, and re-united all its division under one brand in 1984.
For more information on Hanes hosiery and L’eggs pantyhose, take a look at www.haneshosiery.com
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