“In British English, a haberdasher is a business or person who sells small articles for sewing, dressmaking and knitting, such as buttons, ribbons, and zips; in the United States, the term refers instead to a retailer who sells men’s clothing, including suits, shirts, and neckties.
The sewing articles are called “haberdashery” in British English; the corresponding term is “notions” in American English where haberdashery is the name for the shop itself though it’s largely an archaicism now. In Britain, haberdashery shops, or “haberdashers”, were a mainstay of high street retail until recent decades, but are now uncommon, due to the decline in home dressmaking, knitting and other textile skills and hobbies, and the rise of internet shopping. They were very often drapers as well, the term for sellers of cloth.
The word haberdasher appears in Chaucer‘s Canterbury Tales. It is derived from the Anglo-French word hapertas meaning “small ware”, a word of unknown origin. A haberdasher would retail small wares, the goods of the peddler, while a mercer would specialize in “linens, silks, fustian, worsted piece-goods and bedding”.
Saint Louis IX, King of France 1226–70, is the patron saint of French haberdashers. In Belgium and elsewhere in Continental Europe, Saint Nicholas remains their patron saint, while Saint Catherine was adopted by the Worshipful Company of Haberdashers in the City of London…
…”Buttons and Bows” is a popular song with music written by Jay Livingston and lyrics by Ray Evans. The song was published in 1947. The song was written for and appeared in the Bob Hope and Jane Russell film The Paleface and won the Academy Award for Best Original Song.”