Category Archives: Fashion

October 16

Marie-Antoinette’s Hair Extravaganza

On the 16th of October 1793 – only two weeks before her thirty-eighth birthday – Marie Antoinette was beheaded at the Place de la Révolotion in Paris. From a historical perspective, one can refer to her death in a more symbolic context as to a loss of identity that was never entirely her own.  “For Marie-Antoinette, […]

September 18

Franco Moschino: Anti-Elitist Haute Couture?

On the 18th of September 1994, Italian fashion designer Franco Moschino died in Annone di Brianza, Italy. He is still seen as “the irreverent enfant terrible of the fashion industry who poked fun at the excesses of the 1980s with his “tongue in chic” designs, most memorably creating suits festooned with cutlery, jackets with faucet handles […]

September 10

Elsa Schiaparelli: The Couturière and the Avant-Garde

On the 10th of September 1890, fashion pioneer Elsa Schiaparelli was born in Rome, Italy. She is remembered for her witty accessories, such as a purse in the shape of a telephone and reoccurring motifs such as masks, cages, and butterflies. She was also famous for creating garments with multiple uses, such as a skirt […]

August 08

James Tissot – Visual Notes of a Victorian Dandy

On the 8th of August 1902, French Victorian portrait painter, engraver, and enameler, James Tissot, died in Buillon Abbey, near Besançon, France. “After receiving a religious education, Tissot went to Paris at age 19 to study art. In 1859 he exhibited at the Salon. Turning from his rather anguished early works to modern genre paintings […]

June 13

Lucile, Lady Duff-Gordon: Inventor of the Modern Fashion Show

On the 13th of June 1863, Lucy Christiana, Lady Duff-Gordon (née Sutherland), best known as ‘Lucile’, was born in London, England. She gained recognition as a leading fashion designer in the late nineteenth and the early twentieth century. After being abandoned by her first husband, James Stuart Wallace, who left her practically penniless, she set […]

June 07

Beau Brummell: The Dandy as Social Revolutionary

On the 7th of June 1778, the most famous dandy in Regency England Beau Brummell was born in Downing Street, London. Despite his middleclass background, he studied at Eton and Oxford, where he quickly gained popularity among his school friends and tutors, always challenging the official dress codes with his reinvented looks. His wit, originality and […]

May 20

Denim and Popular Culture

On the 20th of May 1873, Levi Strauss and Jacob Davis received a U.S. patent for blue jeans with copper rivets. In San Francisco, Levi Strauss, a Jewish-German immigrant, had established a profitable wholesale dry goods business importing clothing and fabric to sell in the small stores opening all over California and other Western states to […]