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Hermès

Lauren Bowes

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Prada

Lauren Bowes

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Luxury

Jonathan Faiers

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Luxury and fashion today are increasingly uttered in the same breath, and while fashion certainly does not have to be luxurious, the term fashion adds a significance and meaning to everyday clothing that elevates it above its chief utilitarian functions of providing protection, warmth, and modesty. The combination luxury fashion, however, implies cost, exclusivity, indulgence, and excess, and is typically understood as being constructed from the finest materials, involving a high level of craftsm

Ghost London

Morna Laing

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Christian Dior Ready-to-Wear, Spring/Summer 2000

Hayley-Jane Mazières

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

When John Galliano was appointed by Bernard Arnault as the creative director at the French fashion house of Givenchy in 1995, he became the first British designer to lead an established Parisian brand. In fall 1996, he set the bar higher when he became responsible for Christian Dior’s haute couture, accessories, and ready-to-wear lines. Instantly remarked on with his graduate collection, “Les Incroyables,” presented in 1984 at London’s college of Central Saint Martins, John Galliano had been favo

Raf Simons

Else Skjold

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Raf Simons (born 1968) is a Belgian fashion designer educated as an industrial designer in Ghent, who belongs to the second generation of Belgian fashion designers to come after the Antwerp Six. Simons is a key figure in Belgian minimalism, although he departed from an avant-garde approach to fashion. The year 2000 was a turning point in his career: he restructured his own brand and started collaborating with Fred Perry and Adidas, and began working in the fashion luxury sector, first as creative

1980s Style: Key Themes and Trends

Jo Turney

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The 1980s will always be remembered as the decade of power dressing: a time when clothes became big in terms of size and glamour. Shoulders were padded, skirts were fuller, taffettas were crisper, silks exotic, and colors more vivid. Ostentation was the name of the game and bold patterns, from animal prints to architecture-inspired decoration, emphasized scale and luxury. These were frequently inspired by TV shows and glossy magazines. Luxury was also the watchword in daywear, where tweeds and ca

Early Orientalism and the Barbaresque

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

Just to what extent Justinian was instrumental in the demystification of silk within Europe is debatable, because the fibres of the highest quality still emanated from elsewhere: the Middle East and Cathay. Silks had always been the commodity of choice for the Roman citizenry and aristocracy. Although the earliest dates of trade with Asia and the Middle East are uncertain, they can be traced to as far back as the fourth century bc, when the commerce was predominately with India and Persia. China

1815–1871: Turkophilia, Afromania and the Indes

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

Yet neither high Egyptian nights nor the black and opulent coffee with cardamom seed nor the frequent literary discussions with the Doctors of the Law nor the venerable muslin turban nor the meals eaten with his fingers made him forget his British reticence, the delicate central solitude of the masters of the earth.

1868–1944: The Japoniste Revolution, the Deorientalizing of the Orient and the Birth of Couture

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

Civilization! Read: ‘the era that has lost almost all its creative power…in jewellery as in furniture’; and in one or the other we are compelled to exhume or import. Import what? Indian bracelets of glass filament and Chinese earrings of cut paper? No. But more often the naïve taste that underlies their making.

1944–2011: Postwar Revivalism and Transorientalism

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

To call the toga or the mandarin’s gown ‘chic’ is to suggest a process of change which barely existed in ancient Rome or China; the clothes of the beefeater of the samurai are eminently respectable, precisely because they are not up to date; the tarboosh was never ‘all the go’ for it has never gone.

Conclusion: The Revenge of China

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

Dolce color d’orientale zaffiro [Sweet hue of oriental sapphire].

Introduction

Adam Geczy

Source: Fashion and Orientalism. Dress, Textiles and Culture from the 17th to the 21st Century 2013

Book chapter

We arrived at the opulent bazaars that form the centre of Istanbul, a solidly constructed stone labyrinth in the Byzantine style which served as a vast shelter from the daytime heat. Its huge galleries of arched and vaulted ceilings supported by sculpted pillars were in colonnades, each dedicated to particular kinds of merchandise. Most remarkable were the clothes and the female slippers [babouches], fabrics embroidered or in lamé, cashmeres, carpets, gold, silver or opal-encrusted furniture, the

Fashion Designers, Seamstresses, and Tailors

Cynthia Amnéus

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. The United States and Canada 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Throughout the nineteenth century, North American fashion followed the dictates of French design. American dressmakers and tailors looked to Paris for the newest silhouettes and adapted them to the American lifestyle. It was not until the 1930s that independent fashion designers emerged and rejected the idea that all fashion must be inspired by Paris. These early designers created a unique “American look” that was predicated on comfort. This design tended to be more casual, with an air of sophist

Silk Clothing as an Economic Factor, Safavid Persia

Margaret A. Deppe

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Central and Southwest Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Surviving articles of dress in Persia from the Safavid Empire (1502–1736) illustrate the extensive network of production and distribution of raw silk and silk goods throughout Asia and Europe in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The economic role of silk textiles for garments and accessories was substantial. Already an important industry before Safavid times, production of silk increased under Shah Abbas I. Magnificent garments, carpets, and other textiles were produced for palace use and

Paris as a Fashion City

Martine Elzingre

Translated by Pierre Hodgson

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Paris fashions—clothes, lingerie, accessories, and jewelry, together with other beauty products such as hairstyles, fragrances, and cosmetics—have come to dominate the world beyond the borders of France, as well as beyond Europe and indeed outside the West. In Paris itself, the two arts of dressing and seduction have thrived because innumerable ideas and techniques for applying those ideas have constantly been discovered—a continual process of experimentation.

Designer Fashion in New Zealand

Alison Goodrum

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Australia, New Zealand, and the Pacific Islands 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The shape and form of designer fashion in New Zealand have changed over time. In the 1940s and 1950s designer fashion referred to traditional haute couture (literally, “high sewing”) and was narrowly defined in terms of custom-made garments produced to high specifications for wealthy women clients. New Zealand emulated designs from Europe and received seasonal dictates and imports from established fashion capitals, particularly London, Paris, and large cities in North America and Australia. Howev

Fashion, Dress, and Interior Spaces

Peter McNeil

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Global Perspectives 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Clothes are animated by bodies moving in space, and attitudes toward work and leisure that have changed dramatically across culture and time. In early modern Europe until the eighteenth century, sumptuary laws extended well beyond dress to even the type of finish and materials used in interior design. Other societies, including China and Thailand, continuously attempted to control these appearances. In England in the post-Restoration decades, very wealthy women exhibited new independence in the d

Silk

Giorgio Riello

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Silk, a natural fiber produced from silkworms, is not native to Europe. Of all natural fibers, silk has most preserved its exotic connotations: sensual, rich in texture, and unique for its shine. Natural silk remains the most appreciated fiber not just in Europe but globally. Its origin can be located in China and dates back to between 5000 and 3000 b.c.e. Archaeological evidence suggests that Chinese silk was discovered by Europeans as early as 500 b.c.e., but it took several centuries for silk

Materials

Giorgio Riello

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Before 1800, fashionable individuals were defined as much by the textiles they chose as the styles they wore. There are characteristics shared by all textiles. First, they were used by people across society to construct notions of worth and appropriateness. Second, their importance in medieval, early modern, and modern European societies was linked to their value. Before industrialization reduced production costs, textiles remained generally luxuries. A third shared characteristic was their ubiqu

Sumptuary Laws

Irvin Cemil Schick

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Central and Southwest Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Sumptuary laws (from Latin sumptuariae leges) are rules that attempt to regulate people’s habits of (luxury) consumption with respect to clothing, food, furniture, housing, and so forth. While they generally have economic underpinnings, they have also historically been used to regulate and reinforce social hierarchies and morals through restrictions on the purchase and display of such luxuries. The following excerpt from an Ottoman imperial edict issued in 1824 makes this clear: Whereas the popul

Fur

Lise Skov

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. West Europe 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Fur comes from animal pelts that are chemically treated to make the leather supple and retain the hairs, which consist of guard hairs and underwool. Although furs come from many different animals, the most common in the twenty-first century are mink and fox. Fur has been appreciated for two outstanding qualities: warmth, essential in cold climates, and appearance, which accounts for its association with ostentation and prestige dressing. Comfort and durability have also made fur garments and acce

Al-Washsha, a Medieval Fashion Guru

Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Central and Southwest Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The early medieval period in Southwest Asia was a time of change, with an increase in wealth and trade, especially via Central Asia with China, along the so-called Silk Road. In addition there was political and social stability following the establishment of the Abbasid dynasty in 749 c.e. The Abbasid caliphate flourished for two centuries before going into decline and was one of the great Muslim caliphates of the Arab Empire, known for its arts, literature, and architectural achievements, and al

Summer: The Last Century

Timothy Brook

Source: Classic and Modern Writings on Fashion 2nd Edition 2009

Book chapter

[…] Against the sensible and conservative advice of Li Jinde was the contrary urge among merchants and gentry alike to pit themselves in an endless struggle of status competition, and there is no site in which to watch this struggle played out in the late Ming that is more colorful than the volatile arena of fashion. The readiness of late-Ming people to follow fashion was not a complex matter of moral lapse, as the author of Bringing Merchants to Their Senses might like to think. It was the simpl

The Cavaliers and the Parvenus as Imitators of the Court

Werner Sombart

Source: Classic and Modern Writings on Fashion 2nd Edition 2009

Book chapter

Nothing has contributed more towards perverting our ideas of probity, candour, and disinterestedness, or turning those virtues into ridicule; nothing has more strengthened that fatal propensity to luxury, which is natural to all men, but which is become with us a second nature, by that peculiarity of temper, which makes us fasten eagerly upon everything that can gratify our passions; and nothing in particular has so greatly degraded the French nobility as the rapid and dazzling fortunes of contra

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