What are you wearing right now?

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown people’s lives into disarray.  From China to Europe to the Western Hemisphere, virtually no one will be unaffected by the pandemic in some way.  I sit down to write this questionnaire on a gloomy Friday afternoon in Chicago on March 20, 2020. 

Not Too Shoddy

Like so many industries struggling in the midst of the storm that is the COVID-19 pandemic, fashion suffers. 

Teaching from the Collections: Part 3, Claire McCardell

A month ago, Elizabeth Evitts Dickinson wrote an excellent article for The Washington Post, “A Dress for Everyone” (December 12, 2018), which was forwarded to me by multiple friends and colleagues.  Outside of fashion circles, Claire McCardell (1905-1958), is an unsung hero of 20th century American sportswear design.  Evitts Dickson’s article did the designer justi

Teaching from the Collections: Part 1

Image result for bonnie cashin getty image
Bonnie Cashin in her studio (undated)


The Spirit of '76: 1970s Dress, Part I

We’ve just celebrated Independence Day and the Spirit of ’76 has put me in a mind to re-visit a presentation I gave this spring on Seventies dress, the 1970s, that is.

Black Power
Black Power afro pick

Terminology is a Drag, or Sometimes a Dress is a Costume

The annual Costume Institute Benefit Gala has come and gone with only the jpg social media detritus to let the great unwashed know what we have missed.  Online photos reveal that few men heeded Anna Wintour’s dress admonition for this to be a white tie affair.  Whether the broad spectrum of men’s dress reflected rebelliousness, ignorance, or a simple lack of concern, we may never know.  More pressing is why the Costume Institute – as of May 8, 2014, the Anna Wintour Costume Center – is so named.  Costume?

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