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Dressing Renaissance Florence: Families, Fortunes, and Fine Clothing (The Johns Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Political Science) Paperback – July 20, 2005


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Product Details

  • Series: The Johns Hopkins University Studies in Historical and Political Science (Book 120)
  • Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press (July 20, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0801882648
  • ISBN-13: 978-0801882647
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 5.9 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #709,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

A useful and timely undertaking.

(Elizabeth Currie Textile History)

A pioneering book on the sartorial extravagance and fashions in Florence.

(L. R. N. Ashley Bibliotheque d'Humanisme et Renaissance)

A wonderful book, after reading which we will not be able to visualise Renaissance Florence in the same way again.

(Catherine Kovesi Killerby Reviews in History)

This lively book should convince any skeptic that fashion was a serious Renaissance business.

(Diane Owen Hughes Renaissance Quarterly)

This study nicely opens up a little-studied domain of Renaissance culture and shows the way to linking mundane craft with the dearest social aspirations of the Florentine elite.

(American Historical Review)

The Johns Hopkins University Press is to be congratulated for publishing this imaginative book linking the history of technology and guilds with social history, with the study of costume, and with artistic iconography... This book will be a delight for scholar and general reader alike.

(Daryl M. Hafter Enterprise and Society)

Frick's thorough treatment of Renaissance costume has set a new standard of excellence for scholars working on costume of any age.

(Sandra Sider H-Italy, H-Net Reviews)

The final sections of this valuable study on sumptuary legislation and the representation of clothes in art are perhaps the most effective in drawing out the significance of clothing in understanding social relationships and social power in Renaissance Florence.

(Graeme Murdock History)

This is a very substantial and innovative investigation of the clothing industry and fashion market in Renaissance Italy. Frick has done important and original work in the archives and successfully illuminates a crucial but little-studied aspect of Renaissance culture and economy. This book will find a large readership in Renaissance and early modern studies, in gender studies and the history of women and the family, and in social history generally.

(John M. Najemy, Department of History, Cornell University)

Dressing Renaissance Florence is a fascinating and wide-ranging study. It covers everything pertaining to clothing, from ribbon vendors to the great Ghirlandaio frescoes. No other study has taken this broad interdisciplinary approach to dress. Frick has a clear mastery of the complex technical vocabulary surrounding the creation of fashion, and the broad archival base of her study is impressive.

(Carol Lansing, Department of History, University of California, Santa Barbara)

Seldom does one come across such a valuable and entertaining book.

(Alana White Renaissance Magazine)

An important addition not just to the history of clothing, but to our understanding of social positioning within the visual field of Florentine culture.

(John T. Paoletti Journal of Social History)

A fascinating college-level study, recommended for any collection strong in fashion or Renaissance history.

(Bookwatch)

About the Author

Carole Collier Frick is an associate professor of history at Southern Illinois University, Edwardsville.


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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Cas VINE VOICE on September 26, 2002
Format: Hardcover
I'm extremely impressed. I think this book would make an outstanding addition to any Renaissance-lover's, or garbaholic's, bookshelf.
It is not about how to make Italian-persona clothing. Instead, it focuses on how Florentines of the Renaissance used clothing to make social statements. Along the way, it examines some things that garbmakers would like hearing about (one table lists various color combinations found in gowns and linings), but mostly, it's about the sociology of fashion.
Chapters:
* Craftspeople and tailors (including how clothes-making guilds were organized and the role women played in these guilds)
* Tailoring Family Honor (how Florentines viewed honor and how they thought honor was expressed through clothing)
* Family Fortunes in Clothes (how much they spent, and a bit about the secondhand clothes market)
* The making of wedding gowns (you'll love learning how many opinions went into one and how totally political it all was)
* Trousseaux for Marriage and Convent (how they differed, and lists of what went into each)
And stuff about sumptuary law, information about layers of clothing, types of dyes (and an examination of mourning clothes), types of fabric, and clothes as depicted in art -- and how art might have distorted how people really wore clothes. Embroidery is also covered.
Needless to say, the painter Ghirlandaio features pretty prominently here. There are also b/w repros of portraits, unfortunately not super well detailed, but there are a few here I haven't seen before. There are also appendices that are very useful -- lists of currency and measures, categories of clothiers, yardage required for various garments, glossaries of what yardage terms meant, and a HUGE bibliography and glossary of terms.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on January 6, 2007
Format: Paperback
It's surprising to note that professor Carole Collier Frick's DRESSING RENAISSANCE FLORENCE: FAMILIES, FORTUNES AND FINE CLOTHING is the first in-depth study of the Renaissance fashion industry. Here are insights into the social and political meaning of clothing in Florence, with black and white photos throughout displaying changing styles and fashion innovations, visual impressions and how family fortunes were invested in wardrobes. A fascinating college-level study, recommended for any collection strong in fashion or Renaissance history.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is a great book( thesis). Very good reference material for clothing of this period. There is a lot of information about how fashion figured in the lives of the aristocracy in Renaissance Florence and about the guilds and craftspeople who made the clothes and accessories. There are lists of articles, including two Trousseaux, one for a wedding, one for a convent. There is information on fabrics and ornaments. There is info on sumptuary legislation and " fashion police". I wish it had more intimate descriptions of how the clothes were made, layered and worn, cleaned, etc. but I may find this in other books on the subject. This is a wonderful book that brings to life the sartorial atmosphere of the period. I highly recommend this book. I should like to add that there are very few illustrations, and the ones included are black and white renderings of paintings of the period, showing actual members of the elite families.
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By Lisa on November 11, 2012
Format: Paperback
As someone who is fascinated by Renaissance Florence this book is a treasure trove of information. The author speaks of the sociological impact of their wardrobes and how much they spent on them. The vast sums of money dedicated to clothing itself was surprising. The detailed lists of trousseau's were fascinating to read. I loved all of the familial stories that brought the era to life and understanding of the day to day impact of clothes and the importance placed on them. There is a good balance of information and story telling in this book. I plan on reading this book again and again.
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