I embark upon this new year, wearing plaid pants, a banana brooch, and a big-old leopard-print swing coat. Embedded in the threads of my loud and incongruous get-up are messages of hope, destiny and….what the hell am I doing with myself in 2018?!?! Like the clothes that I wear, this question is rhetorical. As a… Continue reading A Leopard Must Change its Spots….
Muslin fabric was the textile of emperors. While the Indian continent historically boasts many different varieties of textiles—from calico to ikat— it was the remarkably translucent, wonderfully white characteristics of cotton muslin that the Indian Mughal court revered. When The British East India Company received a royal charter from Queen Elizabeth I of England, in 1600,… Continue reading The Historic Crescendo of Indian Cotton Muslin in the West (1770-1820)
I just adore this portrait of Elizabeth Farren! As soon as I enter the gallery where she is housed (in the European wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art), I swoon. I hardly notice any other portraits around me. It’s just Elizabeth Farren and I in that room. I’m infatuated. In love. But what… Continue reading The Portrait of Elizabeth Farren, Painted by Sir Thomas Lawrence (1789)
After the dust of WWII had settled, Congolese soldiers brought Parisian fashions back to the Congo. This is a great example of the cultural exchange which occurs during wartime. As deplorable and devastating as war is, it does act as a vehicle for ideas, food and….fashion! It’s interesting to see how the poverty stricken regions of… Continue reading La Sapeurs: Dandies of the Congo
The relationship with art and society has always existed as a symbiosis, where ideas go back-and-forth, are reconsidered, reimagined, and then are left for interpretation. One of my favorite dialogues between society and art happens to be between Serge Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes and exoticism… Continue reading An Ongoing Romance: Ballets Russes and Fashion