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One Hundred Years of Menswear Paperback – September 16, 2009

4.2 out of 5 stars 47 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Cally Blackman is a writer and lecturer with degrees in Fashion Design and History of Art, and an MA in History of Dress from the Courtauld Institute of Art, London. She teaches on the BA Fashion History and Theory course at Central Saint Martins College. Her previous publications include 100 Years of Fashion Illustration (Laurence King) 2007), Costume: From 1500 to the Present Day (2003), and The 20s and 30s: Flappers and Vamps (2000).

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Laurence King Publishing (September 16, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1856696146
  • ISBN-13: 978-1856696142
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 1.2 x 10.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #390,105 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"One Hundred Years of Menswear" is a retrospective of the influences upon men's fashion, and therefore all fashion, in the 20th century. Cally Blackman points out in her introduction that men's fashion is at the avant garde, with women's fashion following, and this was even true in the 20th century, while men's fashion was in a slump of sorts. It's generally accepted that men's fashion was subdued from the beginning of the industrial era until the "peacock revolution" of the 1960s. While true on the face of it, I think that the emergence of modern dress during that period, with its neoclassic overtones, is a cultural colossus. Cally Blackman seems to find some fault with that sweeping statement also, as this book showcases the great variety and influence of men's sportswear, workwear, and "subcultural modes of dress" over the past century.

The book is divided into two periods: 1900-1939 and 1940 onward. Each period is broken down into six themes, "chosen because they were important at a particular point in history." At first, I was thrown by this organization, because the sequence is not entirely chronological, and it views fashion by its function and subculture, not in light of the social, economic, and the technological developments of the time. Those are mentioned in the introduction to each theme, but it would not be possible to follow fashion as a whole though time using this organization. For example, trying to compare the sportswear and artistic fashions of 1930 to one another, in light of the circumstances of their time, would not be easy.

The organization by theme is fascinating in its own right, however, because it focuses on the subculture from which a particular type of clothing or mode of dress came from.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is the best book on men's fashion I have seen. As a costume designer, I have shelves full of books on costume/fashion history, some better than others, and this ranks among the best for its brilliant use of images and concise but informative text. Did you know "Denim" comes from "de Nîmes", as in "from the city of Nîmes, France"? The little captions, about the size of fashion magazine descriptions of what a model is wearing, are instead filled with short descriptions covering the name of the item, context of the image, origins of the garment, and other information like who would wear it and what it means.

The organization is loosely chronological (there are two halves, 1900-1939 and 1940 on), and then by theme. For example, the period from 1900-1939 is broken into the following chapters: Suit, Worker & Soldier, Artist & Reformer, Good Guy & Bad Guy, Player, and Dressing Down, Dressing Up. Each chapter follows the theme, covering clothing for different occasions, looks, and types of people (class, occupation, type of event...)

Each chapter opens with a few pages of text shedding more light on the era and theme and how that concept progresses--the writing is clear and detailed, but does not bog the reader down with too much. For the most part, the book is composed of images ranging from fashion plates and drawings to photos of influential fashion leaders or people in the streets.

As someone who owns Many books on costume and fashion, I can recommend this beautiful item for any reader. This is a GREAT book!!
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The Prince of Wales,Dizzy Dean,Elvis, Mark Twain,George Raft, Humphrey Bogart, Fred Astaire, Don Johnson, Picasso, the Beatles, Cary Grant, Jimmy Hendrix, and David Bowie on the cover. They're all here and many more royal personages, actors, singers, sportsmen, cowboys hippies, beatniks, and average Joes. One Hundred Years is ostensibly a book of fashion but it's so much more as it intertwines history and clothing seamlessly and splendidly.

The heavy stock paper used to create this volume gives it a quality, heirloom feel and look in a book that one is proud to display and share. Painstaking research must have gone into this book with its meticulous detailand rich fabric that threads together the evolution of fashion against the backdrop of history and famous people.

Not being a follower of fashion myself, I wasn't sure that a book like this would hold my interest. Sure it has loads of photographs, but the topic is not one of great interest to me, or so I assumed. The book wore well on this reader and became more comfortable the deeper I got into it, like breaking in a new pair of jeans or slippers.

The author not only details attire and trends but sprinkles in just the right amount of biographical nuggets like so much dressing on a salad.

As the reader sails through the pages of this book, he sees stars as they looked in their younger years,celebrities like Elvis, Marlon Brando, Sean Connery will a full head of hair, Mick Jagger smooth faced, Lurence Fishburned, John Travolta, and Daniel Craig.

Most of the photographs are depicted in black and white, many of necessity because of their ages. I think the use of black and white pictures actually works quite well, capturing a mood, starkness, and timeless quality.
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