"London Fashion Week" has maintained the capital's position as one of the most important cities on the international fashion calendar for over twenty-five years. The roots of London's pre-eminence as an international epicentre of haute couture and pret-a-porter stretch back centuries, and they are explored here in "London After a Fashion". Arguing that fashion was central to the impact of modernity in late nineteenth- and twentieth-century London, Alistair O'Neill maps the progress of fashion against the city's neighbourhoods and streets. Carnaby Street, Soho, Jermyn Street and King's Road each get their turn in London after a Fashion, along with many others, revealing the intersection between London's urban history and the development of fashion. O'Neill's analysis is not merely confined to clothing from the popularity of tattooing in the 1890s to the diverse uses of chintz in the 1980s design aesthetic, he traces the history of fashion in its various manifestations and explores how particular figures were key to disseminating fashion throughout British and international cultures.
The author shows that participating in fashion was not only a pleasurable aspect of modern urban life, but also a fundamental element of contemporary cultural sensibilities. "London After a Fashion" unearths vital moments of revolution in fashion that reflect deeper changes in London's history and culture, contending that these historic changes are unfairly marginalized in accounts of transformation in the city's culture. A fascinating look at fashion and urbanism, this book offers an intriguing reconsideration of the role of fashion in city life and fills in long overlooked gaps in the social history of London and modern design.
Alistair O'Neill is Senior Research Fellow in Fashion History and Theory at Central Saint Martins (University of the Arts London). As a curator his recent projects include SHOWstudio: fashion revolution (Somerset House, London, 2009) and Fashion Lives (The British Library, London, 2005).
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- ID: 9781861893154
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