European Fashion and Cultural Transfer, 1450-1950

Hendrick Avercamp’s ‘Ice Scene’ (c. 1610). Wikimedia Commons The function of fashion as a form of cultural transfer in Europe-wide social processes between 1450 and 1950. By Dr. Gabriele Mentges / 06.03.2011 Professor of the Cultural History of Clothing/Fashion/Textiles Institute for Arts and Material Culture Technische Universität Dortmunt Introduction This article discusses the function of fashion as a[…]

Fashion According to Medieval Popes: Short Tunics for Him and Fabulous Jewelry for Her

The Emperor Sigismund Arriving in Siena in The Story of Two Lovers with texts written in Latin by Eneas Silvius Piccolomini and illuminations by an unknown artist, French, about 1460-70. The J. Paul Getty Museum, MS. 68, FOL. 25 Examining costumes in the pages of medieval manuscripts. By Dr. Bryan C. Keene / 08.05.2011 Adjunct Professor of Art History Pepperdine University[…]

The Frivolous, Ridiculous, and Extreme History of Shoes

Evening shoe, beaded silk and leather, Roger Vivier (1907–98) for Christian Dior. 1958-60. © Victoria and Albert Museum, London A walk through some of the more extreme examples of historical shoes. By Dr. Naomi Braithwaite / 06.09.2015 Research Fellow Nottingham Trent University Shoes long ago eclipsed their primary function – to protect feet. For thousands of years shoes have elicited extremes of both pain and[…]

The Language of Drapery

Louis XIV / Wikimedia Commons By Zhenya Gershman / 10.19.2010 Education Department J. Paul Getty Museum Drapery—artfully folded fabric—has been used by European artists for centuries, from ancient Greek sculpture to contemporary photography. 1.  Drapery Serves Composition Artists make strategic use of drapery to aid composition, the arrangement of elements that leads our eye through a scene. In Peter[…]

Embroidering Electronics: The Next Generation of ‘Smart’ Fabrics

Is this machine adding an antenna to the fabric? Hindrik Johannes de Groot/Shutterstock.com By Dr. Asimina Kiourti / 03.12.2018 Assistant Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering The Ohio State University Archaeology reveals that humans started wearing clothes some 170,000 years ago, very close to the second-to-last ice age. Even now, though, most modern humans wear clothes that are[…]

How Subversive Artists Made Thrift Shopping Cool

Customers shop during at the AIDS Healthcare Foundation’s Out of the Closet thrift store in Columbus, Ohio. Jay LaPrete/AP By Dr. Jennifer Le Zotte / 08.15.2017 Assistant Professor of Material Culture and History University of North Carolina Wilmington National Thrift Shop Day (August 17) exists alongside other quirky holidays like Play Your Ukulele Day (February 2)[…]

Archaeologies of Hair: The Head and Its Grooming from Ancient to Contemporary Societies

Livia (58 BCE – 29 CE), wife of Augustus 12.06.2016 Archaeologies of Hair: An Introduction By Dr. Steven P. Ashby Senior Lecturer in Archaeology University of York Originally published in Internet Archaeology as Ashby, S.P. (ed) (2016) Archaeologies of Hair: the head and its grooming in ancient and contemporary societies, Internet Archaeology 42. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.42.6 Introduction This[…]

3D Printing in Fashion Promises to be Huge – So What’s Holding Us Back?

Dita in 3D. Shapeways By Dr. Danmei Sun / 12.07.2016 Assistant Professor of Textile Materials and Engineering Heriot-Watt University Various manufacturing industries from prosthetics to car parts are now widely using 3D printing in their production processes. They use it for producing prototypes and samples and for mass manufacturing, since you can easily change the[…]

The Medieval Clotheshorse: Roger Wieck on the Fashion Revolution of the Middle Ages

Philosophy Presenting the Seven Liberal Arts to Boethius (detail), miniature in a French manuscript of The Consolation of Philosophy attributed to the Coëtivy Master, about 1460–70 Clothing changed with the times in manuscripts and real life By Annelisa Stephan Editor, The Iris A “fashion revolution” in the Middle Ages? Yes, says art historian Roger Wieck,[…]