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The lost art of dress : the women who once…
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The lost art of dress : the women who once made America stylish (edition 2014)

by Linda Przybyszewski

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1407161,826 (3.45)1
"As a glance down any street in America quickly reveals, American women have forgotten how to dress. We chase fads, choose inappropriate materials and unattractive cuts, and waste energy tottering in heels when we could be moving gracefully. Quite simply, we lack the fashion know-how we need to dress professionally and flatteringly. As historian and expert dressmaker Linda Przybyszewski reveals in The Lost Art of Dress, it wasn't always like this. In the first half of the twentieth century, a remarkable group of women-the so-called Dress Doctors-taught American women how to stretch each yard of fabric and dress well on a budget. Knowledge not money, they insisted, is the key to timeless fashion. Based in Home Economics departments across the country, the Dress Doctors offered advice on radio shows, at women's clubs, and in magazines. Millions of young girls read their books in school and at 4-H clothing clubs. As Przybyszewski shows, the Dress Doctors' concerns weren't purely superficial: they prized practicality, and empowered women to design and make clothing for both the workplace and the home. They championed skirts that would allow women to move about freely and campaigned against impractical and painful shoes. Armed with the Dress Doctors' simple design principles-harmony, proportion, balance, rhythm, emphasis-modern American women from all classes could learn to dress for all occasions in a way that made them confident, engaged members of society. A captivating and beautifully-illustrated look at the world of the Dress Doctors, The Lost Art of Dress introduces a new audience to their timeless rules of fashion and beauty-rules which, with a little help, we can certainly learn again. "-- "The Lost Art of Dress explores how, in the first half of the 20th century, a remarkable group of women, whom Przybyszewski calls the Dress Doctors, taught Americans how to dress well and spearheaded a nationwide movement toward beautiful, economical, and egalitarian fashion. By the 1960s, however, the reign of the Dress Doctors was coming to an end. During the 70's and 80's, the rejection of the Dress Doctors went even further, as feminist groups targeted Home Economics classes in schools as examples of society's pervasive sexism"--… (more)
Member:vintagestitches
Title:The lost art of dress : the women who once made America stylish
Authors:Linda Przybyszewski
Info:New York : Basic Books, a member of the Perseus Books Group, [2014]
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:fashion, history, dress

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The Lost Art of Dress: The Women Who Once Made America Stylish by Linda Przybyszewski

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Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
Fantastic read that chronicles the way we dress. Starting with how it was way back when to how it has evolved into today. After a slow start, I really got into this book. The depth and scope of this subject is much more than meets the eye as the author unpacks the history. It is very interesting to think about this topic with a complex lens than to merely scoff or disregard old-fashioned views and fashions. To truly understand what went in to dressmaking and why it was so important is a thought that is all but lost on today’s clothes wearer. Hence, the book title.

I really enjoyed the author’s commentary and opinions dispersed throughout the book. With her breadth of knowledge on the subject, she surely has established credibility in this realm. I was especially interested to read that clothes can impart the values of wisdom, sophistication, dignity, and not just for fleeting “hotness.” Worth a read even if you aren’t into fashion. I would like the author to write another book exploring the history of men’s fashion. ( )
  ABQcat | Jun 19, 2021 |
If you have any interest in fashion, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in the art of dress making or sewing, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in historical development, great illustrations, funny and at the same time informative writing, then you have to read this.

This book is like a biography of dress. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
If you have any interest in fashion, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in the art of dress making or sewing, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in historical development, great illustrations, funny and at the same time informative writing, then you have to read this.

This book is like a biography of dress. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
If you have any interest in fashion, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in the art of dress making or sewing, then you have to read this.
If you have any interest in historical development, great illustrations, funny and at the same time informative writing, then you have to read this.

This book is like a biography of dress. ( )
  katsmiao | Oct 23, 2015 |
While the topic was interesting, the catty, opinionated comments really detracted from the history. ( )
  Bodagirl | Jan 2, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 7 (next | show all)
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"As a glance down any street in America quickly reveals, American women have forgotten how to dress. We chase fads, choose inappropriate materials and unattractive cuts, and waste energy tottering in heels when we could be moving gracefully. Quite simply, we lack the fashion know-how we need to dress professionally and flatteringly. As historian and expert dressmaker Linda Przybyszewski reveals in The Lost Art of Dress, it wasn't always like this. In the first half of the twentieth century, a remarkable group of women-the so-called Dress Doctors-taught American women how to stretch each yard of fabric and dress well on a budget. Knowledge not money, they insisted, is the key to timeless fashion. Based in Home Economics departments across the country, the Dress Doctors offered advice on radio shows, at women's clubs, and in magazines. Millions of young girls read their books in school and at 4-H clothing clubs. As Przybyszewski shows, the Dress Doctors' concerns weren't purely superficial: they prized practicality, and empowered women to design and make clothing for both the workplace and the home. They championed skirts that would allow women to move about freely and campaigned against impractical and painful shoes. Armed with the Dress Doctors' simple design principles-harmony, proportion, balance, rhythm, emphasis-modern American women from all classes could learn to dress for all occasions in a way that made them confident, engaged members of society. A captivating and beautifully-illustrated look at the world of the Dress Doctors, The Lost Art of Dress introduces a new audience to their timeless rules of fashion and beauty-rules which, with a little help, we can certainly learn again. "-- "The Lost Art of Dress explores how, in the first half of the 20th century, a remarkable group of women, whom Przybyszewski calls the Dress Doctors, taught Americans how to dress well and spearheaded a nationwide movement toward beautiful, economical, and egalitarian fashion. By the 1960s, however, the reign of the Dress Doctors was coming to an end. During the 70's and 80's, the rejection of the Dress Doctors went even further, as feminist groups targeted Home Economics classes in schools as examples of society's pervasive sexism"--

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