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Alexander McQueen’s “Bumster” Trousers

Kate Bethune

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Alexander McQueen’s “Bumster” trousers caused a sensation as one of the most provocative designs of the 1990s. McQueen redefined the silhouette with the Bumsters by cutting the waistband two inches below that of hipster trousers to elongate the torso and expose the lower spine and top of the buttocks. Although a prototype pair was made in late 1992, Bumsters first appeared on the catwalk in McQueen’s inaugural show, “Nihilism” (spring/summer 1994). Reappearing in collections including the controv

Kurt Cobain

José Blanco F.

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Kurt Cobain, the lead singer of Nirvana, was born on 20 February 1967 in Aberdeen in the state of Washington. He became the salient figure in grunge music, a style that developed in the Pacific Northwest of the United States in the middle of the 1980s and achieved global popularity in the early 1990s. Grunge is a style of alternative rock based on accented percussion, heavy electric guitar riffs, electronic distortion, and loud—often howling—vocals. Nirvana, formed in 1988, became one of the most

Marlon Brando

Stephanie Kramer

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The white T-shirt, the biker jacket, jeans: these three items have become so ingrained in menswear’s fashion lexicon that it is almost difficult to conceive the relative newness of these classic wardrobe staples within the context of menswear’s history. In fact, it is perhaps even more difficult to fathom what the fate of these integral menswear items would have been without the legendary style impact of Marlon Brando. One of the most influential and celebrated American screen and stage actors of

Marithé + François Girbaud (house)

Sandra J. Ley

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Sportmax

Nanna Marie Lund

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Flyte Ostell

Emily M. Orr

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Designer Biography

Blue

Shari Sims

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Blue ranks as one of the most variegated shades of the fashion palette, from palest sky blue to blue-black navy. The wild plants (indigo) and precious gems (lapis lazuli) once used to create blue dyes have given way, for the most part, to synthetic chemicals. Designers have channeled bright blues during seasons of vivid coloration, or subtle washes of blue to suggest “no-color” color, with some of the richest colorations used in head-to-toe ensembles. Whether in the blue jean revolution of the 19

Greasers

Else Skjold

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

“Greasers” were devotees of a subcultural style originally for young, working-class men (later also women) that emerged in the 1950s in the United States. The word “grease” refers to the wax or pomade used to make the characteristic hairdo of the look, which also typically included biker boots, jeans, T-shirts, and leather jackets. Groupings of greasers would often appear in motorcycle gangs around the emerging rock ’n’ roll scene, and parts of the subculture formed the motorcycle club “Hell’s An

Versace Couture, Fall/Winter 1990: “Marilyn” Sequined Trousers

Rebecca Straub

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In the early 1990s, as fashion moved into the realm of popular entertainment, stars plucked from the world of pop, supermodels, and British royalty all wore Versace. Their visibility gave image to the luxe lifestyle the brand came to connote. The man at the helm of this fashion juggernaut, Gianni Versace, with his enviable lifestyle and celebrity clientele, came to embody the ideals of the house he worked hard to open in 1978.In examining a look from Versace Couture of fall/winter 1990—a pair of

Fashions for a Phoney War

Geraldine Howell

Source: Wartime Fashion. From Haute Couture to Homemade, 1939–1945 2012

Book chapter

As the chapters in this volume show, at the current conjuncture, an astonishing number of people in a striking number of cultural contexts have come to deploy jeans as a symbol of movement between social worlds and boundary crossing – be it generation, gender, culture, religion or class-inflected boundary crossing. In a world characterized by intensifying exchange and transposable goods, produced by the now ‘virtually universal intersection of (cultural) structures’, blue jeans seem to epitomize

Adapting Georg Simmel’s classic reflections on fashion, Daniel Miller and Sophie Woodward (2007: 341-2) have suggested that the near-global ubiquity of jeans offers people different ways of negotiating the conflicting socio-cultural forces of conformity and individuality. In Woodward’s British study, for instance, using a familiar and hardly spectacular example, jeans provided a ‘relief from the burden of mistaken choice and anxious self-composition’ that women continuously felt (Miller and Woodw

The Limits of Jeans in Kannur, Kerala

Daniel Miller

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

Within the context of a study of global denim, South Asia is significant in representing perhaps the only remaining major region of the world where the wearing of jeans remains relatively uncommon. No one place can stand for South Asia, but an advantage of Kannur, a town in northern Kerala, is that at least for that state, it represents in the minds of its inhabitants, a clear position midway between the cosmopolitanism of the metropolis and the conservatism of the countryside. As such, many peop

For reasons concerning the politics of power governing the site I had chosen to do my fieldwork on, I was told by the party’s manager that I should not talk to the dancers at the events. If I wanted to do my research there I should carry it out in a discreet and silent way. Not daring to question this, I went to the top of the stand facing the dance floor and started to watch the festivities from there. My project of considering the objects through their materiality and agency had to be postponed

How Blue Jeans went Green: The Materiality of an American Icon

Bodil Birkœbwk Olesen

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

First they built the country’s infrastructure, then they populated it with a collective identity

The Jeans that Don’t Fit: Marketing Cheap Jeans in Brazil

Rosana Pinheiro-Machado

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

In the Denim Manifesto anthropologists are challenged to study denim – something that is commonplace in our everyday lives but notably absent from ethnographic analyses. As a manifesto, the authors refute the ontological philosophical logic that an element, such as clothing, that is located on the surface of bodies is intrinsically a superficial problem. Instead they consider the philosophical implications of the use of jeans – a clothing resource that resolves the anxiety and the contradictions

Indigo Bodies: Fashion, Mirror Work and Sexual Identity in Milan

Roberta Sassatelli

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

Pondering over her wardrobe, Francesca, a stylish, freshly graduated woman in her mid-twenties, says that, whilst they are ‘vital’ to her, ‘Denim jeans just sit with the rest [of her clothes]: they are just in the middle of the mess, but I take them out much more often, so always know where they are’ (Interview 15). These few words allude to the particular position that jeans – normal and yet special – occupy in young people dressing practices. This partly reflects what youth from Milan participa

Diverting Denim: Screening Jeans in Bollywood

Clare M. Wilkinson-Weber

Source: Global Denim 2011

Book chapter

During a research visit to Bombay in 2008, I asked a young costume assistant, as we sat talking in a suburban Bombay coffee house, how often she had sourced jeans for films. She replied: ‘Denim is big in films. Our actors are wearing denim throughout the film. They have to have jeans, unless they are wearing a suit. I cannot think of a film where we haven’t used jeans, even actresses.’

Book chapter

I wear his jeans when I’m on my own in my flat … I don’t know why … I guess it makes me feel like I’m still close to him, kind of comforted …

Bloomer Costume

Colleen R. Callahan

Source: The Berg Companion to Fashion 2010

Encyclopedia entry

Our skirts have been robbed of about a foot of their former length, and a pair of loose trousers of the same material as the dress, substituted. These latter extend from the waist to the ankle, and may be gathered into a band & We make our dress the same as usual, except that we wear no bodice, or a very slight one, the waist is loose and easy, and without whalebones & Our skirt is full, and falls a little below the knee.

Fake Branded Clothing in Post-Socialist Romania

Magdalena Craciun

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

Encyclopedia entry

Fake branded clothes, mostly of foreign origin, ranging from cheap versions to high-quality copies and seconds of originals with imperceptible defects, can easily be found in Romania in open-air markets or well-established shops, in shop windows or “under the counter,” and in many people’s wardrobes. Behind such goods, there are various interconnected phenomena—for example, an informal economy, opportunities, compromises, and constraints in post-Socialist consumption, as well as the increasing so

Dress Reform

Patricia A. Cunningham

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

Encyclopedia entry

Throughout the nineteenth century and in the early decades of the twentieth century, the basic silhouette of women’s dress in the United States went through many changes. Many people accepted this ever-changing succession of fashions as a natural phenomenon, an inevitable outward expression of progress; fashion was a sign of modernity. The changing styles of dress and its silhouette were largely dependent on various undergarments—corsets, petticoats, crinolines, bustles, and other supporting devi

American Women’s Fashions 1970–1979

Daniel Delis Hill

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

Encyclopedia entry

The 1970s was an era of striking contrasts in women’s fashions. In the early 1970s, the thigh-high miniskirt dominated, but by the end of the decade, most hemlines were well below the knee, some sweeping the ankles. The polyester double-knit pantsuit and platform shoes were favored by career women of the early 1970s, but a few years later, natural fibers and designer logos of the layered look prevailed in corporate offices. Sexualized styles such as hot pants and snug, hiphugger bell-bottoms were

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