I'm just going on memory here, but I think it's mentioned in the first or second book that the Weasley kids tend to wear Muggle-style clothes during holidays from school, but Mr. and Mrs. Weasley still tend to wear robes. As for the sweaters, I don't know if they were intended to be worn under robes. They could be meant more as cozy weekend wear in a drafty castle. As for pants under robes...
originally posted by SilverLily_13
I agree! Except there are a few exceptions. The Weasleys for instance usually wear Muggle clothes--the kids do, at any rate. The books may say so, but I'm not sure. JKR says the Weasleys do wear Muggle clothing frequently (on her website in the section about the Weasley family specifically) and that's partly why they're known as "blood traitors". Also, Ms. Weasley knits her children sweaters. :) (I find that so sweet!) I'm sure wizards wear sweaters... but they'd have to wear them under their robes, or with pants. (I'd certainly hope they all wear pants under their robes! I mean... that could turn out badly in some cases, if not.)
So I believe it depends on the individual wizard, whether they wear anything under their robes.
As far as I know, this is the only passage in the series that directly deals with what is (or isn't) worn under robes. Because of it, I would assume that the lack of pants under the robes would be typical for two reasons.
Snape had directed his wand straight at James; there was a flash of light and a gash appeared on the side of James's face, spattering his robes with blood. James whirled about; a second flash of light later, Snape was hanging upside down in the air, his robes falling over his head to reveal skinny, pallid legs and a pair graying underpants.
-Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, p. 647, American edition, hardcover
First, if it pants were a required part of the school uniform, Snape would have to have been wearing them. Even if pants were merely customary, not mandatory, Snape probably would have been wearing them. They would have probably have been raggedly old cast-offs from his father, but Snape's memories from the Pensieve scene in DH shows that he does own Muggle clothes.
Second, the funny part about Snape hanging upside down in midair is seeing his scrawny legs and worn-out underwear. If people usually wore pants under their robes, James would have assumed that Snape would have been wearing them. He probably found another way to him. (Using a Vanishing Spell on Snape's clothes, perhaps?)
Yes, the lack of pants under robes turned out very badly in this case. However, if Snape hadn't been humiliated in the way he was, he might have never called Lily a Mudblood. Who knows what ramifications that might have had. Lily and Snape might have stayed friends, or their friendship would have ended differently, at least. That could have affected if or when Lily and James got together and if or when Snape became a Death Eater. Harry Potter may not have ever been born, or may at least had a very different life. All this just because of the lack of pants under robes. Little things do make a difference.
Nearly Headless Nick's full name is Sir Nicholas de Mimsy Porpington. "Sir" is a title that denotes knighthood. Since their seems to be no royals, nobles, lord, or the like in the wizarding, it seems likely to me that Sir Nicholas was knighted by a Muggle king. He could have served in the court of that king, since he died a full two centuries before the International Statute of Secrecy went into effect in 1692. That would explain Nearly Headless Nick's interest during CoS in joining the Headless Hunt, as hunting was a widespread pastime of the kings' courts during his Nick's lifetime. If Nick had served a king, he probably would have dressed like others in the court, not as a wizard.
originally posted by Salt Lake Queen
And then you think about the ghosts: Nearly Headless Nick dresses more like a Muggle of the 15th century than a typical robed wizard.
Oh, and where is Nick's clothing described in the books, anyways? Am I forgetting where it is, or are you just assuming how Nearly Headless Nick looks in the movies is also how J.K. Rowling pictured him, Salt Lake Queen?
Specifically on the subject of dress robes, I think that wizards (at least the ones in Europe) have been wearing robes for a long time, at least since the Middle Ages. As Muggle fashion evolved, the magical community just stuck with their robes. For wizards and witches, robes are everyday where, and dress robes are just a fancier version of them. Dress robes are probably made of nicer fabrics and may be cut differently than regular robes.
I doubt that witches a hundred years ago or so would be trying to get a dress with a big hoop skirt under their dress robes. First off, why cover such a lovely dress? However, I doubt such a thing was in fashion for witches. At the time, purebloods were the ones in the magical community with money and power, so they probably set the standards of dress. Since they despised Muggles, it's highly unlikely that they'd want to imitate their clothing. I think they probably would have favored dress robes, since they hark back to an older time where the magical community had much more power/
originally posted by circlemidnight
I'm wondering about the usage of robes long ago, especially in Victorian and Rococo times, where everything was over the top.
I think that wizards (at least the ones in Europe) have been wearing robes for a long time, at least since the Middle Ages. As Muggle fashion evolved, the magical community just stuck with their robes. For wizards and witches, robes are everyday where, and dress robes are just a fancier version of them. Dress robes are probably made of nicer fabrics and may be cut differently than regular robes.