Out and about with Claire McCardell

Do you live in the Chicago area? Will you be traveling to Chicago before January 9, 2010? If so, you're in luck! The FIDM Museum Claire McCardell dresses seen in today's post are on exhibit in Chicago as part of the Learning Modern exhibition at the... Read Article ››

Bonnie Cashin

Lots of designers start from scratch every six months or so, moving with the trends. Not Bonnie Cashin. Every season she adds a little to what has gone before–some new colors, an experimental shape. Nothing invalidates her previous season’s... Read Article ››

Tina Leser

Tina Leser (1910-1986) is among the generation of American designers credited with creating and popularizing the “American Look” during and immediately after World War II. Along with designers such as Carolyn Schnurer, Louella Ballerino and Claire... Read Article ››

Would you believe it’s paper?

As many of our readers may already know, season 6 of Project Runway was filmed at FIDM! In the most recent episode (season 6, episode 5), the contestants used pages from the Los Angeles Times to create “ripped from the headlines” garments. You can... Read Article ››

From mini to maxi

As discussed in this post, fashions changed dramatically in the 1960s. For women, the miniskirt was emblematic of widespread social and cultural changes which occurred throughout the decade. British designer Mary Quant is usually credited with bringing the... Read Article ››

Upcoming exhibition!

  High Style: Betsy Bloomingdale and the Haute CoutureOctober 21, 2009-December 13, 2009 We couldn’t wait any longer to tell you about this exhibition! We hope that all of our readers will all be able to attend, but for those who are outside the Los... Read Article ››

Little Lord Fauntleroy

What the Earl saw was a graceful childish figure in a black velvet suit, with a lace collar, and with lovelocks waving about the handsome, manly little face, whose eyes met his with a look of innocent good fellowship.   Frances Hodgson Burnett, Little Lord... Read Article ››


Like many museums that focus on dress and textiles, the FIDM Museum is constantly searching for compelling menswear for our collection. Most 19th and 20th century menswear is relatively straightforward; it tends to favor function over form, resulting in... Read Article ››

Emile Pingat

Unlike his contemporary Charles Worth, Emile Pingat (1820-1901) has been largely forgotten. Pingat was active between 1850 and 1896 and at the time, his reputation was equal to that of Worth. Beginning in the 1870s and ending in the mid-1890s, publications... Read Article ››

Charles Worth

Often called the “dictator of fashion,” Charles Worth (1825-1895) was the preeminent fashion tastemaker of the mid to late nineteenth century. Born in rural England, Worth emigrated to Paris in 1845 and worked in a series of dry-goods and... Read Article ››

Everything old is new again!

If you’re interested in the history of fashion, it is usually impossible to ignore the ways in which contemporary designers reference styles of past eras. As we mentioned in this post, designer John Galliano frequently mines fashion history for his... Read Article ››


Hello readers! First of all, we’d like to thank you for your fantastic response to our blog. We’re very excited that our blog is off to such a great start and look forward to sharing more FIDM Museum objects with you. Thanks for your support! Our... Read Article ››