Sunday, February 12, 2012

February is Fashion History Month

Costume history is a subject that I find utterly enchanting and the shelves in my office groan with stacks and stacks of books on the topic. Normally I have to travel to distant places to get my fashion history fix, but this month there are a number of local exhibitions celebrating the history of fashion. 

12.12.12 Life in Three Centuries at the Fashion History Museum
Photo courtesy of the Fashion History Museum 2012
'12.12.12: Life in Three Centuries' looks at the intersection of fashion and life in 1812, 1912, and 2012 and is presented by Jonathan Walford, Kenn Norman, and members of the board of the Fashion History Museum at the newly restored Guelph Civic Museum (52 Norfolk Street) in Guelph. The exhibition is currently open 1 - 5 p.m. daily and will close March 4, 2012. For more information, please call the Fashion History Museum at 519 267-2091.

Making Fashion at the Textile Museum in Toronto
Photo by Ingrid Mida 2012

In the Making History exhibition at the Textile Museum of Canada in Toronto, Ryerson University Fashion students present recreations of historical garments and accessories. Dr.Alison Matthews David, who teaches Costume History at The School of Fashion at Ryerson University, developed this project as a hands-on research assignment for her students to foster respect for and understanding of the skills of the largely anonymous makers of historical dress and textiles. She said that "As a dress historian, I hope that as future fashion and costume designers, Ryerson students will take these traditional techniques, from smocking and hand-beading to painting on silk and shoemaking, and bring them to life again on stage and catwalk." The opening reception for this exhibition is on Wednesday, February 15, 2012 from 7-8 pm at the Textile Museum (55 Centre Avenue). By the way, I helped install this exhibition. In handling these objects, I could tell that these garments and accessories were made with a lot of love! 

Roaring Twenties at the Bata Shoe Museum
Photo courtesy of the Bata Shoe Museum and under copyright
And of course, if you haven't yet seen the exhibition Roaring Twenties: Heels, Hemlines and High Spirits at the Bata Shoe Museum, it continues until June 2012. Wouldn't this pair be perfect for Valentine's Day?