Seeking 2 New Interns — Deadline Extended

Worn Through is still looking for 1 – 2 new interns to start as early as September or October and preferably work with us for the entire 2014-15 school year.

We are particularly looking for people who are comfortable with Twitter, academic journal articles, and those who want to help with finding and posting CFPs, interesting videos, doing research with contributors, and other tidbits our readers would enjoy.

We need someone who checks email daily and can be fairly quick in response time, although this is the type of position where you can do many of your tasks in chunks (such as pre-posting weeks’ worth of CFPs). Therefore we can work with your workplace or school schedule as long as you are a good email communicator. The ideal candidates are involved in the research/academic/history & culture side of apparel studies and want to continue in those fields. Although someone in marketing/trend research or similar may be great too.

Worn Through is a volunteer network of individuals who work as thriving museums, schools and doing independent research projects of all sorts, so this is a strong networking and professional experience opportunity for a student or new graduate. Many of our interns move onto nice jobs and/or become contributors here at Worn Through. Internships are unpaid, however we have worked it out with schools in the past to do any paperwork needed to get credit if that is an option for you. Also note we have 30-40,000 hits per month and almost 1000 Facebook fans so your efforts will be visible to the public and your hard work recognized. Also upon a strong job we are happy to write letters of recommendation.

Please email Dr. Monica Sklar with your CV and brief cover letter by September 30. Goal start date is October 15, October 31 at the latest.

Comments

Back to School: Top Five Research Resources

It’s September, which means back to school!  There hasn’t been a single year when I am not completely preoccupied by what to wear on the first day of class.  Crafting and presenting my socio-intellectual-professional identity becomes a full-time project from the end of August until the start of term.  Taking the time to equip myself sartorially was always a helpful way to manage the uncertainty and anxiety of unknown classes, unfamiliar teachers and unforeseen changes amongst friends last seen before the summer break. As an adult, working out what to wear at this time helps me to get in the mood for teaching, moving away from the breezy feel of holidays towards a more disciplined aura manifest in the lace up shoes, sombre tones and heavy fabrics of my September wardrobe.

Yet, preparing to return to our studies means brushing up on our books as well as our winter warms.  So, to get ready for this academic year, I wanted to highlight my top five online fashion/textile/clothing resources that any budding scholar or thinker could add to their academic outfit and we don’t already feature here on Worn Through.

First up is the Fashion Research Network, a collaborative project developed by PhD students from the Royal College of Art and the Courtauld Institute of Art and set up in 2013 “in response to their own experiences of navigating the networks already open to fashion researchers.”  Not only does the website promote early career researchers but it is one of the few websites that attempts to bring all the various strands of fashion research together into one space, where conferences and courses can be browsed simultaneously.

Second up is the University of Brighton’s listings of dress collections in museums put together by Prof Lou Taylor and Dr Charlotte Nicklas in July 2011.  This comprehensive list offers fashion researchers a wealth of information concerning dress/textile collections in the South, South East and South West of England.

In third place is the Vintage Fashion Guild ‘s Label Resource, which enables those with an interest in history and clothes to begin tracing the retail lineage of loved garments through their labels.  Although this resource is aimed at vintage buyers and sellers, the information provided is fascinating for anyone who has ever wanted to know more about the story of their worn clothes.

Taking fourth position is Behind the Seams, Vice Magazine’s collection of fashion and dress documentaries. Online access to interesting leftfield films about apparel, particularly from a global perspective, is not easy which is why this site is so valuable.  I only wish that films were added more frequently, thereby building upon this unique archive.

A still from Bulletproof Fashion, a Behind the Seams film about Bogata’s tailoring industry which specialises in protective clothing for bodyguards and UN officials

My last choice is Documenting Fashion, a dress history blog set up by Rebecca Arnold, Oak Foundation Lecturer in History of Dress and Textiles, and students studying textiles and dress at the Courtald Institute of Art in London in 2013.  This collective approach to writing about dress and fashion provides a good model of academic research whereby both student and teacher’s interests inform one another’s work within a public information forum.

If you know of any other online resources that you would like to share with our community, please do let us know via the comments below.  Alternatively, if you have an idea for something that does not currently exist, we would love to hear from you!

(Top image is a collage by Alexis Romano taken from the Documenting Fashion website)

2 Comments

You Should Be Reading: Fashion and the Future

fashion books from stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

This week’s You Should Be Reading column takes a look at the future of fashion through the lens of technology: what sorts of new advances in fashion design and consumption will be possible over the next decade or more? This is an interesting question when we consider the exponentially fast pace of tech developments in today’s world. And while many of these developments started with different applications in mind, the fashion world has used its inherent ingenuity to tweak such developments for its own purposes. We are the lucky consumers who benefit from such research. What does the future hold? These four recently published articles give you some idea. Enjoy!

1. Blázquez, M. (2014). Fashion shopping in multichannel retail: The role of technology in enhancing the customer experienceInternational Journal of Electronic Commerce, 18(4), 97-116. 

The difficulty of translating the in-store experience to the online environment is one of the main reasons why the fashion industry has been slower than other sectors to adopt e-commerce. Recently, however, new information technologies (ITs) have enabled consumers to evaluate fashion online, creating an interactive and exciting shopping experience. As a result, clothing has become the fastest-growing online category of goods bought in the United Kingdom. This trend could have serious consequences for brick-and-mortar stores. The aim of this quantitative research is to gain a better understanding of multichannel fashion-shopping experiences, focusing on the role of IT and the crossover effects between channels. In particular, the author explores the influence of the level of online experience on the perceptions and motivations of fashion consumers when they buy across multiple channels. The theoretical framework of hedonic and utilitarian shopping values is applied to measure consumers’ shopping experiences and shopping motivations to buy in different channels. The results from a quantitative survey of 439 consumers in the United Kingdom suggest the need to redefine the in-store shopping experience, promoting the use of technology as a way to create an engaging and integrated experience among channels. Retailers must think in all channels holistically, boosting interactive and new technologies for the Internet and taking advantage of all touchpoints with the consumer, including mobile devices and social networks. — Paraphrased Article Abstract

2. Gilgen, D., & Frankjaer, T. R. (2014). From wearables to soft-wear: Developing soft user interfaces by seamlessly integrating interactive technology into fashionable apparelDesign, User Experience, and Usability. User Experience Design Practice, 8520, 253-260.

The development of electronic features for use in apparel has advanced rapidly in recent years, and applications in athletic wear have been particularly successful. However, ‘Smart Fashion’ has not yet been integrated into everyday garments. In this paper the authors propose a new approach to the design of interfaces in Smart Fashion, which they refer to as the Soft User Interface (SUI). The ways in which e-textiles physically convey information differs greatly from traditional ways in that information is communicated via graphical user interfaces on computers, smartphones or on WearComp devices. As a result of their research, the authors advocate the use of iconic and indexical signs for Smart Fashion as these are widely accessible and understood. As an extension to this new interface paradigm, they expect that the harvesting of biometric data, including bodily gestures, will significantly extend the possibilities of SUIs. – Paraphrased Article Abstract

3. Nosu, K., & Ikeda, M. (2014). A preliminary analysis of item-selection behavior of Japanese female university students examining a 2D virtual fashion web site.  IEEJ Transactions on Electrical and Electronic Engineering, 9(5), 569-571.

E‐commerce is spreading into various fields in our daily lives as a result of the growth of interactive Internet communication technologies. Two‐dimensional computer graphics (2D CG) image presentations, which are simple and inexpensive, can be displayed directly on apparel e‐commerce sites. This study uses sequential pattern mining to analyze the item‐selection behavior of Japanese female university students examining a 2D virtual fashion Web site. It is found that most users did not initially examine their favorite category items; instead, they examined the commonly viewed items first, and then examined various other fashion items before making their final selection. – Full Article Abstract 

4. Sohn, M., & Bye, E. (2014). Exploratory study on developing a body measurement method using motion captureClothing & Textiles Research Journal, 32(3), 170-185.

This was an exploratory study on measuring body surface measurement change in motion using a motion capture system. The purpose was to test the reliability of a motion capture system as a new body measurement method, and to investigate body surface measurement changes in motion. Using an optical motion capture system, this study focused on the measurement changes on the back of the body while the subject performed an arm rotation test. The results of this study suggested that the motion capture system can be used as a body measurement method, especially for measuring the body in continuous movement. The results of the body surface measurement change in the arm rotation motion test showed that upper body measurements increased or decreased corresponding to the shoulder joint and scapula movement. The shoulder width (-38.45%), back width (16.08%), and back arc at the armpit (27.69%) exhibited the most change. – Full Article Abstract 

 

Image Credit: stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

Comments

Reader Survey 2014

chk

We would like to encourage our readers to participate in a brief survey about Worn Through. Quite a few years ago we did a similar survey and it helped shape the direction we took the blog.

Here is the link to do the survey

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer a few questions. It’s brief and would only take a couple of minutes. To keep things quick for you we did not include a lot of open commenting, however, we invite you to add any further comments to this post itself, and after the survey is over we’ll pick one person who commented at random and I will send you a copy of my book Punk Style (it does not have to be a glowing review of the blog to get the book!).

I’ll post this a few times and we’ll wrap it up the first week of September.

Again here is the survey link.

Comments

Seeking 2 New Interns

Worn Through is looking for 1 – 2 new interns to start as early as September or October and preferably work with us for the entire 2014-15 school year.

We are particularly looking for people who are comfortable with Twitter, academic journal articles, and those who want to help with finding and posting CFPs, interesting videos, doing research with contributors, and other tidbits our readers would enjoy.

We need someone who checks email daily and can be fairly quick in response time, although this is the type of position where you can do many of your tasks in chunks (such as pre-posting weeks’ worth of CFPs). Therefore we can work with your workplace or school schedule as long as you are a good email communicator. The ideal candidates are involved in the research/academic/history & culture side of apparel studies and want to continue in those fields. Although someone in marketing/trend research or similar may be great too.

Worn Through is a volunteer network of individuals who work as thriving museums, schools and doing independent research projects of all sorts, so this is a strong networking and professional experience opportunity for a student or new graduate. Many of our interns move onto nice jobs and/or become contributors here at Worn Through. Internships are unpaid, however we have worked it out with schools in the past to do any paperwork needed to get credit if that is an option for you. Also note we have 30-40,000 hits per month and almost 1000 Facebook fans so your efforts will be visible to the public and your hard work recognized. Also upon a strong job we are happy to write letters of recommendation.

Please email Dr. Monica Sklar with your CV and brief cover letter by September 15. Goal start date is October 1 or 15 latest. 

Comments

Reader Survey 2014

chk

We would like to encourage our readers to participate in a brief survey about Worn Through. Quite a few years ago we did a similar survey and it helped shape the direction we took the blog.

Here is the link to do the survey

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer a few questions. It’s brief and would only take a couple of minutes. To keep things quick for you we did not include a lot of open commenting, however, we invite you to add any further comments to this post itself, and after the survey is over we’ll pick one person who commented at random and I will send you a copy of my book Punk Style (it does not have to be a glowing review of the blog to get the book!).

I’ll post this a few times and we’ll wrap it up the first week of September.

Again here is the survey link.

Comments

Reader Survey 2014

chk

We would like to encourage our readers to participate in a brief survey about Worn Through. Quite a few years ago we did a similar survey and it helped shape the direction we took the blog.

Here is the link to do the survey

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer a few questions. It’s brief and would only take a couple of minutes. To keep things quick for you we did not include a lot of open commenting, however, we invite you to add any further comments to this post itself, and after the survey is over we’ll pick one person who commented at random and I will send you a copy of my book Punk Style (it does not have to be a glowing review of the blog to get the book!).

I’ll post this a few times and we’ll wrap it up the first week of September.

Again here is the survey link.

Comments

You Should Be Reading: Fashion and Textiles

fashion books from stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

This week’s Reading column looks at the material aspects of fashion: the production and consumption of textiles themselves. Textiles are of course used not only for the production of clothing but also for decoration and and functionality in our home environments. These four recently published articles, though, focus mainly on how producers and consumers relate to textiles as they are used for fashion and accessories. From an exploration of the Dorze weavers in Ethiopia and textile production in 14th century Greenland to contemporary uses for recycled textiles and the meaning of materiality in clothing, these articles examine how we make and use textiles for our clothing. We hope you enjoy!

1.  Ekström, K. M., & Salomonson, N. (2014). Reuse and recycling of clothing and textiles–A network approach. Journal of Macromarketing, 34(3), 383-399. 

The accelerated pace of consumption in the Western world has led to an increase in clothing and textiles disposed of in the garbage rather than being reused or recycled. The purpose of this article is to increase understanding of how clothing and textile consumption can become more sustainable by demonstrating how members of a network view and deal with this problem. The study is based on meetings over one and a half years and on a survey. Different views on the problem as well as various solutions on how to increase reuse and recycling of clothing and textiles are presented, including means and challenges. A macromarketing perspective, involving different actors in society, is necessary in order to make consumption more sustainable and for finding long-term solutions. The authors argue that understanding symbolic consumption and the fashion system can contribute to the macromarketing study of societal development from a sustainable perspective. – Paraphrased Article Abstract

2. Klepp, I. G., & Bjerck, M. (2014). A methodological approach to the materiality of clothing: Wardrobe studiesInternational Journal of Social Research Methodology, 17(4), 373-386. 

The material is not just ‘a carrier’ of different types of symbols, but an active element in the practices. Bringing this to the fore requires new research methods. This article discusses a methodological approach, we call it a wardrobe study, which allows for the analysis of the way in which clothes relate to each other on the whole or within parts of the wardrobe. More specifically, we discuss how this method can contribute to increasing the materiality of clothes studies. The theoretical point of departure for this approach is a practice theory in which the material enters as an integral part. First, the article briefly discusses developments within the study of dress and fashion. Second, the methods combined and developed in wardrobe studies are discussed. The emphasis here is primarily not only on the weaknesses of the individual methods in practice-oriented dress studies, but also on how they jointly can contribute to the wardrobe study. — Full Article Abstract

3.  Mathiszig, L. (2014). Dialog: The Dorze weavers of EthiopiaTextile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture, 12(2), 180-187. 

Ethiopia is a country with an ancient history and a rich tradition of crafts, still to be discovered by mainstream tourism. While traveling here, the author was impressed by the beautiful artisan work and the truly original craftsmanship she found, untouched by mass markets and fashion trends. These ranged from the unique leather clad baskets of the north and beautiful silver jewelry of Tigray to the highly skilled basketwork of the women of Harar and the extraordinary skills of the South Omo Valley tribespeople. However, it is the weaving tradition, which particularly interested her. Whether in the capital, Addis Ababa, or walking in the remote Simien mountains, simple textiles made with the most basic equipment are worn and used everywhere; unlike in many other parts of Africa, traditional handwoven fabrics have remained a part of everyday life. It is the Dorze people who are renowned throughout Ethiopia for their weaving tradition and skills, and the author went back to find out more about them, their history and craft, traveling to their homeland in the southern highlands of Ethiopia. – Paraphrased Article Abstract 

4. Smith, M. H. (2014). Dress, cloth, and the farmer’s wife: Textiles from Ø 172 Tatsipataa, Greenland, with comparative data from IcelandJournal of the North Atlantic, 6(6), 64-81.

Midden excavations at Ø172 (Tatsipataa), on the eastern shore of the Igaliku fjord in southwestern Greenland, produced a significant textile collection consisting of 98 fragments. This collection is important as it stems from a well-contextualized and well-stratified sequence, allowing significant insights into the evolution and nature of cloth production in Greenland. Analysis of this collection showed that while the earliest fragments mirror Icelandic counterparts of comparable ages, the Ø172 collection changes considerably by the 14th century. From this point onward, Greenlandic women wove a weft-dominant cloth unique to Greenland. This cloth type has previously been noted in other, later, Greenlandic collections, but the Tatsipataa collection provides new evidence for the date of its first production. The sudden appearance of this distinctive weft-dominant Greenlandic homespun in the mid-14th century suggests that its production was a domestic adaptation to the initial climatic fluctuations of the Little Ice Age. Overall, the Tatsipataa collection suggests that Greenlandic textile production did not follow the evolutionary trajectory of Icelandic textiles, which became a form of currency from the early to the later Middle Ages. Instead, Greenlandic textiles appear to have been consistently produced for household consumption, without the intense standardization for trade observed in medieval Icelandic collections. – Full Article Abstract 

 

Image Credit: stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

Comments

Reader Survey 2014

chk

We would like to encourage our readers to participate in a brief survey about Worn Through. Quite a few years ago we did a similar survey and it helped shape the direction we took the blog.

Here is the link to do the survey

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer a few questions. It’s brief and would only take a couple of minutes. To keep things quick for you we did not include a lot of open commenting, however, we invite you to add any further comments to this post itself, and after the survey is over we’ll pick one person who commented at random and I will send you a copy of my book Punk Style (it does not have to be a glowing review of the blog to get the book!).

I’ll post this a few times and we’ll wrap it up the first week of September.

Again here is the survey link.

Comments

You Should Be Reading: Fashion and Costume

fashion books from stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

This week’s column focuses on the word “costume” as a way of dressing for a specific event or role as well as the ensemble itself. What are the differences between costume and dress? What decisions do we make when consciously choosing a costume for an event? How can costume work to conceal or reveal aspects of our identities? These are a few of the questions tackled by the authors of this week’s recently published articles. We hope you enjoy!

1. Cole, S. (2014). Costume or dress? The use of clothing in the gay pornography of Jim French’s Colt StudioFashion Theory, 18(2), 123-148.

It would seem that one of the intentions of the viewer of gay pornography would be to see the sexual engagement of the participants (and perhaps the “money shot”) with a focus upon the gymnastics and writhing of bodies that constitute the practice and representation of sexual activity within the film. However, before nudity or nakedness is presented the “characters” are dressed. Using the films and photography of Colt Studio and its founder Jim French from the period 1967‐81 as a focus this article explores the ways in which the “characters” are constructed through their clothing and costuming. It will address the ways in which these “icons” of masculinity that had developed in the pre-liberation physique magazines and stag films reflected the prototypes, archetypes, and stereotypes of post-liberation gay identity and dressed appearance in the fifteen years following the Stonewall riots and gay liberation. Colt Studio was famed for its particular presentation of hypermasculine images and a “stable” of masculine actors that included Clone superstar Al Parker. This article will offer an analysis of the use of particular items of clothing and the iconic styles of leatherman, motorcycle cop, and gay clone in Colt’s output of this period. – Full Article Abstract 

2. Copeland, R., & Hodges, N. (2014). Exploring masquerade dress at Trinidad Carnival: Bikinis, beads, and feathers and the emergence of the popular pretty masClothing & Textiles Research Journal, 32(3), 186-201.

Over the past several decades, there has been a considerable shift in the form of masquerade costumes worn during Trinidad Carnival. With the growing popularity of Carnival, there are increasing concerns about whether the modern style of costume will lead to the disappearance of Carnival s traditional meanings. This study employs an ethnographic methodology to understand dress at Carnival in the context of a 21st century global society. Data collection took place in Trinidad during the Carnival season and employed the methods of participant observation, depth interviews, and photographic documentation. Data were analyzed for emergent themes, and an interpretation of the significance of changes in masquerade costume for understanding Carnival was developed. Further research on the role of the dressed body at Trinidad Carnival is needed to fully examine the power of dress to define Carnival and shed more light on its importance. – Full Article Abstract 

3. Moden, M. (2014). Layers of the ethereal: A cultural investigation of beauty, girlhood, and ballet in Japanese Shōjo Manga culture. Fashion Theory, 18(3), 251-296.  

The popularity of classical ballet as a cultural form grows apace in a global context. Even in a country like Japan, which has not been previously identified as a “ballet capital,” it is receiving wide public attention. As a conventionally female-dominated arena, ballet and the ideas that circulate around it reveal the complex interrelationship between femininity, beauty, and selfhood. A prime example is the understudied genre of “ballet manga” in Japanese Shōjo Manga culture. With the first examples published in the mid-1950s, the history of ballet-themed manga reveals that, particularly in the years following the Second World War, ballet was the epitome of a dream world, connoting luxury, beauty, and glamour. “Ballet manga” used this particular art form, its costumes, and romanticized, almost fairy tale-like settings of Old World Europe as a mix of femininity, rigor, and elegance remade for Japanese audiences. Since the 1970s, some authors have attempted to combine this imagery of ballet with the idea of feminine independence and agency, thus negotiating the paradox of reality and fantasy in lived experience. Ballet, therefore, is not presented simply on the stage but in Japan is frequently interpreted/experienced through Shōjo Manga. This distinctive situation deserves closer scholarly investigation. – Full Article Abstract

 

Image Credit: stellafluorescent.blogspot.com

Comments