Wool basketball uniform with box pleats
A striking aspect of this uniform, worn by Lois Muir, is the heaviness of the fabric and the bulkiness of form – in marked contrast to the aerodynamically sleek sporting wear of today. The uniform has a sense of formality. The pleated skirt, accompanied by navy bloomers and stockings, must have been very uncomfortable for the players. The team wrote to New Zealand Outdoor Basketball to request permission to wear sockettes instead of stockings (it was summer). They were permitted, but not for the final. Those stockings earned the Women’s Basketball Team the nickname 'Licorice Legs'. Lois Muir (DCNZM, OBE) is one of New Zealand’s sporting legends. She played indoor and outdoor basketball for Otago and represented New Zealand in indoor from 1952 to 1962, and in outdoor (now called netball) from 1960 to 1964. She coached the New Zealand National Netball team for 15 years until 1988, during which the team won two World Championships in 1979 and 1987. Since retiring from coaching Lois has continued as a national selector and served on a number of sporting bodies, including Netball New Zealand, the Hillary Commission, the Sports Foundation, the Masters Games and the New Zealand Sports Hall of Fame. Lois was inducted into the Sports Hall of Fame in 1993. Read more about wearing the colour black in the New Zealand Fashion Museum publication Black: The history of black in fashion, society and culture in New Zealand.
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