History of Dress Category Archives

Hair Textiles and Gaga

We all know Gaga loves her wigs, but she also dabbles with clothes that resemble wigs, as with this LaVer dress she recently wore to a taping of The View:   Gaga on The View, May 2011 LaVer couture hair dress, 2010 collection Since medieval times, locks of hair have been given to lovers as amulets, and the Victorians wove hair of the deceased into …

Exhibit Review: Hussein Chalayan: Fashion Narratives at Arts Décoratifs, Paris

Last week, I spent the Fourth of July as an American in Paris. I was there for five days installing the press exhibition of Faberge’s new collection of jewelry. So, in lieu of roman candles, there were multi-coloured gems lighting up the skies. And of course there were eggs!  (If you follow the link above, you will be greeted by a photo of the lobby …

Mixing and Matching Men

A couple months ago I found myself in Phillie for a family event and I was delighted, not only to spend time with my awesome extended family, but to visit the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Always a favorite of mine (I think they’ve corned the Duchamp market), they also happened to have multiple fashion exhibits up. I’ll skip over the Capucci: Art into Fashion, which …

Caught on Film: A Night Out (1940s)

After three years of book reviews, exhibition reviews, film and fashion history articles, today marks my last post for Worn Through. My first article for Worn Through, highlighting books on Paris, Africa, London and Hollywood, was published in April of 2008, and I can’t believe how the time has flown by. I’ve so enjoyed collaborating and developing ideas and projects with the other contributors. I’ve …

CSA 2011- Boston Uncommon: Revolution & Evolution in Dress- Symposium Recap Part II

  This is the second half of a two part recap.  See the first part here. As the second half of the Costume Society of America symposium began, Friday morning continued with more juried papers, research exhibits, and a trip to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston where curator Pamela Parmal, offered a private gallery talk on the recently ended exhibition Scaasi: American Couturier (see …

Book Review: Zoot Suit: The Enigmatic Career of an Extreme Style

“In what might be the most fascinating chapter, Zooting Around the World, Peiss follows the zoot suit as it makes its way outside of the United States. From the French zazous, to South African tsotis and the Russian stiliagi, the zoot suit jumped around the world, finding a home among disaffected youth. Peiss credits the international popularity of the zoot suit to the influence of Hollywood films and its striking visual profile.”

The Monetary Value of Fashion

As Monica previously mentioned, the auction of Debbie Reynolds’ extensive Hollywood costume collection was (not surprisingly) a smashing success, in that it set new new highs for what collectors would pay for literal fabric of Hollywood history. Items that have been reported on most have included: $4.6 million for Marilyn Monroe’s white subway dress from The Seven Year Itch (1955): $3.7 million for Audrey Hepburn’s …

CSA 2011- Boston Uncommon: Revolution & Evolution in Dress- Symposium Recap Part I

This past week was the annual Costume Society of America Symposium, “Boston Uncommon: Revolution and Evolution in Dress”.  Although I have been a member of CSA for several years, this was the first time that I was able to actually attend the conference– and on many levels I found the experience to be extremely rewarding. The schedule was packed with concurrent presentations, panels, and professional …

The Accidental Archivist: Anonymous Old Family Photographs

There are things I collect and save ritualistically as items of fashion historical research. With a mind towards not accumulating too many “things” I try to keep focused on a few significant collecting urges, and consider the amount of space I physically have to store things properly.  Some things I actively collect – like vintage conversational print dresses, Egyptomania fashion garments, and the odd nineteenth …

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Available now: Punk Style by Worn Through founder, Monica Sklar, PhD. Find it at : Amazon.com, Powell's Books, or a bookseller near you.