In the 1940's and 1950's, clothing labels were often a work of art.Beautifully stitched and often including the name of the store from which the items were purchased, they can help both date and locate items for you.They are often beautifully embroidered and designed.There is also an annoying manufacturing trend that develops in the 1990's to label almost everything as needing to be dry-cleaned! Modern labels continue to be sophisticated, with new materials tried all the time.Clothing was no longer seen from Korea that often, and Taiwan, India and China showed up on labels much more frequently.In the 1990's labels reached a height of sophistication for lower end clothing.The items were usually beaded and ornate, like shells, cardigans or dresses like the dress in which this label is found.
The graphics reflect popular rounded styles of the late 1970's and the Size 18 shown is closer to a modern size 10/12.
There are many clues you will need to use to determine the age of a garment.
The style, the cut, the fabric used and even the way it is constructed are all very important details to begin to look for and understand.
The union label can also be helpful, and there is a good site here with great information.
Because they are easy to show, I decided to use manufacturer and store labels as my first post in this category.