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Fifty Dresses That Changed The World (Design Museum Fifty)

You don't have to be a fashionista or a design aficionado to adore this fascinating look at the power of one dress to change society. Join the Design Museum, the world's leading museum in contemporary design, on a guided tour of the 50 most important dresses in social history and design.Filled with pages of beautiful clothes, and the famous faces (and bodies) that put them on the world stage -including Wallis Simpson, Jackie Kennedy, Twiggy and Cher and, of course, Princess Di-this fun volume shares fascinating appraisals of what gave the 50 most important garments their iconic status.

Series: Design Museum Fifty

Hardcover: 112 pages

Publisher: Conran (November 1, 2009)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1840915382

ISBN-13: 978-1840915389

Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches

Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)

Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #16,055 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #1 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Textiles & Costume

If there is a stereotype of a fashion-conscious woman, I'm its direct opposite. I work at home, so there's no reason for me to dress up -- or to get dressed at all, really. My usual outfit is a polo shirt and jeans. Nonetheless when I saw this book on a library shelf I grabbed it, because it is simply fun to look at.The 50 dresses in this collection (from the London-based Design Museum) are intended to be representative of dresses that changed the world... or, at least, the *fashion* world. They're all from the last century, and two thirds are from the 60s until now. Each dress has two photos and several paragraphs of explanatory text, giving the reader a context for the outfit and explaining why it was so important. There are two types of dresses shown: dresses worn by a prominent woman whose fashion sense made a difference, and designer dresses that impacted the way ordinary women dressed or otherwise had an impact.In the former category is the obvious choice of the Jackie Kennedy look, and also Queen Elizabeth's coronation gown. My favorite of these is the Wallis Simpson wedding dress, which immediately caused women everywhere to want copies; I don't blame them, as it's very attractive. And as the book points out, "[Designer] Mainbocher's gown achieved that most difficult of sartorial feats -- the marriage of restraint and glamour."The designer dresses with an impact include the Midi dress, the "moon girl collection" dress, and Christian Dior' 1947 "New Look" dress.Some of these dresses are unquestionably classics that affected how women dress and reflected (or contributed to) a societal change.

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