One of the most fascinating things about fashion and style is how closely they are wedded to societal happenings. Historically fashion has been informed by wars, women’s movements, music and inventions. Sometimes it seems as though fashion is influencing women, literally manipulating them, as in a corseted gown conforming a woman to sit up straight, be restricted in movement and look decorative. Other times it is as if women are influencing fashion, as in the 1920s when women earned the right to vote, and the acceptance of going out dancing and drinking. With this emerging voice of equality, hemlines rose, hair was worn shorter and a woman could trade in her corset for a silky slip. In the 1960s women rejected many of the patriarchal oppressions put upon them. Spiked heels gave way to comfortable flats, and skirts were traded in for pants. Bikinis, halter tops and miniskirts were an expression of a sexual revolution for women.
Reforming Fashion will show examples of transformations in 20th century apparel and accessories. All of the artifacts are from the Historic and Cultural Textile and Apparel Collection which directly supports the College of Business Design Programs. For more information and links to social media visit our website on the collection.