Hanky Panky History: A Lingerie Timeline

Lida Orzeck & Gale Epstein, c. 1973

The best partnerships grow out of friendships. Hanky Panky co-founders Lida Orzeck & Gale Epstein, c. 1973

One of the things many people are surprised about is how long Hanky Panky has been in business. In fact, today marks our 38th anniversary!

Here is a brief timeline featuring a few of Hanky Panky’s greatest hits and milestones.

1977: Hanky Panky’s first designs introduced—a bralette and bikini, made from hand-embroidered handkerchiefs. These styles are now part of the permanent collection of the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

1977: Hanky Panky’s first designs introduced—a bralette and bikini, made from hand-embroidered handkerchiefs. These styles are now part of the permanent collection of the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

April 9, 1978: Hanky Panky’s original cotton handkerchief lingerie photographed by Skrebneski for the Chicago Tribune.

April 9, 1978: Hanky Panky’s original cotton handkerchief lingerie photographed by Skrebneski for the Chicago Tribune.

 

1979: the Hanky Panky shoulder pad undershirt is introduced. In 1984, the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art accessioned two examples of this innovative style into its collection.

Henri Bendel Catalogue, c.1980

Henri Bendel Catalogue, c.1980

Hanky Panky stretch lace shoulder pad undershirt. c.1984

Hanky Panky stretch lace shoulder pad undershirt. c.1984

 

1986: Hanky Panky’s innovative 4811 one size lace thong is introduced and due to its fit, beauty, practicality and comfort, quickly becomes a best-selling style.

Hanky Panky's Iconic Lace Thong was Introduced in 1986

Hanky Panky’s Iconic Lace Thong was Introduced in 1986

 

August 1987: Hanky Panky’s stretch lace teddy photographed by Steven Meisel for VOGUE.

Hanky Panky Bodysuit. Vogue, August 1987, 363

Hanky Panky Bodysuit. Vogue, August 1987

 

 January 2004: Hanky Panky’s signature rolled packaging introduced. The candy-like packaging and countertop display expanded Hanky Panky’s presence beyond lingerie shops and into ready-to-wear boutiques, spas, department stores, and even vending machines!

Hanky Panky Rolled Thong Display

Hanky Panky Rolled Thong Display

 

June 18, 2004: Hanky Panky’s thongs are featured on the front page of The Wall Street Journal, introducing Hanky Panky’s one-size lace thongs to a wider audience. The 4811 Original Rise and 4911 Low Rise become fashion staples, and inspire countless imitations at every price point.

Hanky Panky thongs featured in The Wall Street Journal, June 18, 2004, A1

The Wall Street Journal, June 18, 2004

 

2007: Hanky Panky launches Petite and Plus Sizes, with the introduction of 4911XS and 4811X.

Hanky Panky Petite and Plus Sized Thongs

Hanky Panky Petite and Plus Sized Thongs

 

November 19, 2009: Hanky Panky launches e-commerce at HankyPanky.com

HankyPanky.com, December 2009

HankyPanky.com, December 2009

 

Fall 2010: Hanky Panky After Midnight® collection of risqué lingerie debuts. Co-founder Lida Orzeck said of the collection, “We’re working on extending our popular signature lace fabric into a sexier collection of lingerie called ‘After Midnight’, and we wanted to see what would happen if we pushed the envelope a little further.”

Hanky Panky After Midnight®

Hanky Panky After Midnight®

 

Spring 2012: Hanky Panky introduces Hanky Panky BARE invisible panties. Made from a unique second-skin jersey from Italy, Hanky Panky BARE panties are ultra-lightweight, smooth, and disappear under the clingiest fashions without sacrificing Hanky Panky’s signature fit, quality and comfort.

Hanky Panky BARE

Hanky Panky BARE

January 2015: Hanky Panky introduces their signature fragrance, Hanky Panky Eau de Parfum. Of the fragrance, co-founder Gale Epstein said, “Hanky Panky Eau de Parfum is an extension of Hanky Panky—fresh, flirty, and comfortable. I wanted to create a fragrance that complements the intimacy of lingerie, a classic signature fragrance made from the finest ingredients.”

Hanky Panky Eau de Parfum

Hanky Panky Eau de Parfum, available in a 1.7 oz spray ($70) and a .20 oz rollerball ($25) on hankypanky.com.

 So, what does the future hold for Hanky Panky? Wait and find out!

-Larissa, Senior Designer

About Hanky Panky

In 1977, designer Gale Epstein created a hand-made lingerie set for her friend, Lida Orzeck, crafted out of embroidered handkerchiefs. The original designs were the inspiration for the company name, Hanky Panky. Blending traditional with modern glam looks, Hanky Panky is a fashion favorite of countless celebrities.
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