Lucky Pines
This Japanese fabric was produced for a maru obi, the most formal of obi for women. Maru obi cloth is typically woven in widths of twenty-five to twenty-six inches—about double the width of more casual styles of obi. The cloth is folded around a stiff lining and stitched together along the selvedges. It is bulky,...
Buttons – An Expression of Curiosity
This button, from a set of nine, offers the viewer a chance to peek into the age of Enlightenment, a period of time when the human mind was breaking free from the constraints of the Church and the limitations of the Middle Ages. The Renaissance, primarily spanning the fifteenth through sixteenth centuries, is often thought...
Art, Fashion, & Frivolities
“Now that fashion has become an art, a fashion gazette must also be an art revue. So it will be with Gazette du Bon Ton.”—Lucien Vogel, 1886–1954 Pictured alone against a bare backdrop, the young woman of this fashion illustration sports a cloche hat and a sleek black and white coat with a voluminous collar...
The Master Silk Printer
Elizabeth Broman discusses the 1920s trade catalogue The Master Silk Printer.
Summer Straw
Sample books, originally created for commercial, educational, or scientific purposes, have become valuable guides to understanding the products, technological processes, materials, aesthetics, provenance, and use of objects manufactured in the past. Both the Museum and Design Library have extensive collections of sample books containing diverse groups of samples ranging from paint chips to lace. This...
Vitamin Suisse
At first glance, this necklace catches the light and each individual bead shimmers like a mirror. Upon closer inspection, however, it is discovered that instead of beads, it is made up of small square pieces of medical pill blister packages, each loosely woven on thin, metal wire. This necklace was designed by Verena Sieber-Fuchs, a...
Image of panel discussion from Stepping Out Fashion in the 1920s
Stepping Out: 1920s Fashion
In conjunction with The Jazz Age: American Style in the 1920s, a Design Talk with fashion historians Caroline Milbank and Jan Reeder on the revolutionary fashion trends that marked the era, with special emphasis on style in New York and the influence of Paris.
Scraps: Resource List
Online resources on sustainable textiles and fashion.
Plastic Virtue
Lea Stein’s laminated celluloid jewelry designs joyously celebrate the materiality of plastic. Fusing together thin sheets of brightly colored acetate to create elaborately layered designs—seen here in this bracelet from 1970—Stein and her husband, Ferdinand Steinberger, developed this process in the late 1960s. Steinberger was a chemist who invented this new chemical process, which allowed...