Tuesday, 10 May 2011
A review on Seventeenth-century Women's Dress Patterns
My goodness and oh my! Buy this book!
Ahem. Seventeenth-century Women's Dress Patterns edited by Susan North and Jenny Tiramani arrived today. It's a wonderful book with patterns from V&A's costume collection. Though clearly heavily influenced by Janet Arnold's patterns books, this books goes further. For one thing, there are colour pictures! The book begins with a section on tools and techniques and some history. A how to on knitting, sewing and embroidery stitches. Then there are 15 patterns including bodices, jackets, mantle, gloves and a cap. There are pictures of every garment from several angles and, if possible, a portrait from the time. A description of the garment. Then there are several close-up, followed by the patterns. And then you get the construction! Some garment have extra suggestions on fastening and such and some have x-rays.
This is an incredible book! So informative and interesting. The only less good thing about it, and that is also mentioned in the foreword, is that V&A's 17th century collection is rather limited and most garments are from the first three decades. Not a plethora of styles unfortunately- I had high hopes on something from 1650-1680. Perhaps one can hope that this book will spark an interest for the 16th century and something else will crop up.
Aaaaand. This book is Book One. There will be more books. I wonder what is next. I hope there will be books on men's clothes as well. And I can't wait for the 18th century book.