Pierre's Costumes

Flash Back Friday- Philadelphia In Style

Philadelphia in Style

Laura here! I had the opportunity to stop by the Michener Art Museum and see their Philadelphia in Style: A Century of Fashion exhibit from the Robert and Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection at Drexel University. The show demonstrates the vital role Philadelphia played in the world of 20th century fashion and the pieces are stunning.

I wandered through displays highlighting Philadelphia haute couture as well as advances made locally both in manufacturing and in the development of the department store. The exhibit began with beautiful examples of Edwardian silhouettes and continued with a 1920s drop waist dress covered in glass beads, society dresses of the 1930s, and a Christian Dior “New Look” shirtwaist dress from the 1950s among others.

If you are able to make it to the show keep an eye out for my favorite piece, a sage 1930’s evening gown with a square neckline in a classic silhouette which could easily be worn today. With the invention of the sewing machine in 1846, the integration of assembly lines into factories during the Industrial Revolutions of the 19th century, and the practical needs imposed upon the fashion world by the World Wars the world’s population underwent a major shift in how they acquired their clothing. Demands shifted from custom made clothing hand constructed by tailors, dressmakers, and seamstresses to ready-mades on sale for immediate use in stores and catalogs. Two of the most well known of these department store revolutionaries were Philadelphia’s own John Wanamaker and Strawbridge & Clothier who together helped put the City of Brotherly Love on the fashion map.

The exhibit is on display through June 26, 2016. I highly recommend that you check it out.

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