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The Queen

Fiona Corbridge

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In 2015, Queen Elizabeth II became Britain’s longest-reigning monarch, having occupied the throne since 1952—over sixty-three years. The royal wardrobe has been of interest to the world since her childhood, and as a young woman, the clothes she wore for royal tours abroad and official visits were very influential. The designs produced for her by British couturiers were copied for the mass market. In the early twenty-first century, the Queen’s immaculate appearance transcends the vagaries of fashi

Amanda Wakeley

Vanessa Semmens

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Norman Hartnell

Vanessa Semmens

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

The Empress’s Old Clothes: Biographies of African Dress at the Victoria And Albert Museum

Nicola Stylianou

Source: Dress History. New Directions in Theory and Practice 2015

Book chapter

On 20 April 1869 the V&A accessioned a number of objects from Ethiopia including clothes and jewellery that were listed in the museum register as having been given to the museum by the ‘Secretary of State for India’ and ‘belonging formerly to the Queen of Abyssinia’ (V&A 1869). At this time the V&A had not yet been divided into departments with objects being accepted for inclusion in the museum on the grounds of design excellence or as demonstrations of particular techniques. Included in this gif

Yoruba in Nigeria and Diaspora

Rowland Abiodun

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Yoruba people number well over thirty million from about sixteen ancient kingdoms. They spread all over southwestern Nigeria and extend well into the neighboring countries of Benin and Togo. The Yoruba have been urbanized since the first millennium c.e. and are well known for their fine artistic achievements, especially the naturalistic life-size bronze heads and terra-cotta sculptures of Ile-Ife. In addition to being among the most accomplished carvers in wood and ivory in Africa, the Yoruba

Benin

Joseph C.E. Adande

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Republic of Benin is bounded in the south by the Atlantic Ocean, in the north by Niger and Burkina Faso, in the east by Nigeria, and in the west by Togo. Thus, it naturally shares both history and culture with the peoples of these neighboring countries. In Benin, clothing, regardless of definition, is as complex and varied as its numerous linguistic groups. In the Benin Republic, Vodun adepts and masquerade performers dress primarily to please their gods and offer them the appropriate manifes

Hawaiian Dress Prior to 1898

Linda Boynton Arthur

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

Encyclopedia entry

Hawai’i is an archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, a chain referred to simply as Hawai’i or the Hawaiian Islands. The six major islands are Oahu, Kauai, Maui, Molokai, Lanai, and the Big Island, that is, Hawai’i. The latter name is rarely used, in order to reduce confusion, since Hawai’i (the archipelago) became an American state in 1959. Until the late eighteenth century the peoples who inhabited these islands shared a common culture, although they were somewhat divided politically in that each had

Royal and Aristocratic Dress

Beatrix Bastl

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

After her flight from Lochleven to Carlisle, Mary [Stuart of Scotland] was in dire need of clothes and asked [Queen] Elizabeth to send her some dresses. Elizabeth harshly denied her request, because Mary had not asked Elizabeth for just any kind of clothes, but for used dresses from Elizabeth’s own wardrobe. As a reply, Elizabeth sent some lengths of black velvet, black satin and black taffeta. With this gift Elizabeth not only denied Mary royal dignity but also sent a sharp reprimand for Mary’s

Windsor, Duke and Duchess of

Andrew Bolton

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Duke of Windsor was born Prince Edward of York on 23 June 1894. With the death of his grandfather, King Edward VII in 1910, his father was crowned King George V. Upon his father’s accession, Prince Edward of York became Duke Edward of Cornwall, and on his sixteenth birthday, Prince Edward of Wales.

Sweden

Ulla Brück

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

Encyclopedia entry

Historically there are several indications of an urge to follow fashion in Sweden, although changes were slow. During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries medieval and Renaissance traits still dominated. In the eighteenth century, two-piece dresses for women and breeches and jackets for men became more common. Sweden has numerous varieties of provincial folk dress. Some consider these to be historic items, with strong local identification, while others see them as inventions of nineteenth-cent

Rites of Passage and Ritual Traditions of the Shan

Susan Conway

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. South Asia and Southeast Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Shan State is bordered by China, Tibet, Laos, and Thailand. The Shan belong to the Tai ethnic groups. Their rulers came from prominent local families, but they usually had to present tribute payments to more powerful monarchs. The major Shan religion is Theravada Buddhism, which assimilated ancient spirit religions. The Shan make textiles and cultivate cotton. They have for centuries imported Chinese and Burmese raw silk and other luxury fabrics. Exotic court dress identified rulers with the gods

Court Dress of Thailand: History and Symbolic Significance

Susan Conway

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. South Asia and Southeast Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

According to ancient Buddhist chronicles, Thai royalty descended from heaven. Rule by divine right flourished, reinforced by the Khmer belief that kings were manifestations of Brahmanical gods. Thai royalty adopted Hindu court rituals, while Buddhist monks performed rites reflecting the belief that the king is a bodhisattva (a reincarnated Buddha who is a spiritual guide). Early figurines of boddhisatva wear long draped cloth and elaborate jewelry. Sumptuary laws reinforced belief in the king as

The Kingdom of Benin

Kathy Curnow

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The Kingdom of Benin, a historically important traditional state, is located in southern Nigeria just north of the Niger River Delta. For centuries, its Edo people have looked to Benin City as their cultural center. The seat of a hereditary kingship, it is also a university town and state capital. The oba, its semidivine monarch, still exerts considerable influence even though the modern nation has usurped most of his political privileges. About two hundred chiefs assist him and form the aristocr

Iranian Headwear in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries

Mary H. Farahnakian

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

Encyclopedia entry

From a Western perspective, exotic Iranian headwear of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries has been largely unknown to people around the world because of the lack of scholarly research on the topic. Additionally, few comparisons of Iranian headwear with that of other countries, particularly those in the Middle East, have been published. Where did the distinctive Iranian headwear originate? What influenced its development? Who developed its unique and divergent styles? This article addresses

Khil’a: Clothing to Honor a Person or Situation

Stewart Gordon

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

Encyclopedia entry

Khil’a was a ceremony that included elite and expensive textiles made into particular garments. These garments were used to define a relationship of honorable service. At its simplest, a king or his representative bestowed on another person, usually of lower rank, an outer cloak, shirt, sash, and pants, plus often a turban and shoes. In a robing room adjacent to the court, the recipient donned the whole outfit, reemerged to the acclaim of the assembled nobles, and—if not so before—was deemed “sui

Beaton, Cecil

Nancy Hall-Duncan

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The most important influence on Beaton’s fashion photography was his interest in stage design and theatrical production, in which he was extremely accomplished. He did costume design for the film Gigi and set and costume design for the play and the film My Fair Lady, receiving Oscars for both. He also designed for the Metropolitan Opera, the Comédie Française, the Royal Ballet (London), and the American Ballet Theatre. “Completely stage struck” at an early age, he wrote in his Photobiography that

Between East and West—Elite Fashions and Political Change in the Romanian Principalities, 1774–1850

Angela Jianu

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Foreign observers often remarked on the love of luxury among Greek and Romanian nobles at the Phanariot courts of Bucharest and Iasi. Details excepted, female and male figures looked very similar in long, ample vestments. When the Swedish painter Alexander Roslin painted Catherine the Great’s maid of honor, Moldavian Princess Zoe Ghika, in 1777, the sitter may have represented more than a pretty girl in exotic costume. The daughter of a former Phanariot prince of Moldavia, she had joined her fami

Trickle-Down

Susan B. Kaiser

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Fashion Variations

Susan Kaiser and Ryan Looysen

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

Encyclopedia entry

For the last fifty years or so, a central debate in fashion studies has centered around the influence of minority, subcultural, and street styles on high and mainstream fashion. Are these styles outside the realm of fashion? Or is fashion a process of complex negotiation that includes such styles, providing fashion variations for different groups? Among the names assigned to these styles are antifashion, oppositional style, and alternative style. However, these terms all require an opposite again

Swaziland

Lombuso Khoza

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The kingdom of Swaziland, which gained independence from Britain in 1968, lies between South Africa and Mozambique. The population shares a culture, language, and loyalty to their monarch. In the1840s Europeans brought cloth and beads, which local peoples creatively added to their traditional attire. Today, in town or country, Swazis wear traditional or Western clothing, or combine both. Traditional dress, worn for ceremonies, plays a vital role in maintaining cultural ties. Lacking written recor

Georgia

Irina Koshoridze

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. East Europe, Russia, and the Caucasus 2010

Encyclopedia entry

The history of Georgian ethnic dress is closely related to the history of textiles in this region. Simultaneously, the nature of the country, ethnic differences between the regions, the political orientations of the different regions, contemporary fashions, and foreign influences also played important roles in the formation of this dress.

Royal Dress in India and Pakistan

Ritu Kumar

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. South Asia and Southeast Asia 2010

Encyclopedia entry

India’s oldest literary works, the Vedas (1500–500 b.c.e.) contain no exact descriptions of royal clothing; however, accounts of flowing, gold-embroidered clothes, obviously regal dress, appear in the earliest Veda. The Aryans instituted kingship and social hierarchy. Early royalty clearly wore waist wraps, sashes, upper garments, and turbans. In northern Indian kingdoms, Central Asian influence dominated; local royalty is depicted in flowing garments and elaborate jewelry. The southern Indian Sa

The Dynamics of Fashion in West Europe

Bo Lönnqvist

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

Encyclopedia entry

Fashion in Europe can be defined as a cultural phenomenon since about 1500. Sociological definitions of fashion have emphasized collective and individualistic processes, expressed in such notions as: leaders and adherents, court fashion, bourgeois fashion and social class, fashion restrictions, and mass fashion. All can be found in West Europe, where modern fashion originated. Social change, reflected in changing fashions, has been closely connected with cultural change. Sumptuary laws promulgate

Madagascar

John Mack

Source: Berg Encyclopedia of World Dress and Fashion. Africa 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Madagascar is by far the largest of the islands lying off the coast of Africa, yet its traditions of dress and personal decoration are distinctively different from what is found even on adjacent parts of the continent. They also show considerable differentiation within the island itself. Clothing is adapted both to extremes of heat and, in the center of the island, to cold, especially at night. Banana tree fiber, bark, hemp, and indigenous silkworms have all been exploited in making textiles, and

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