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The Cut of Women's Clothes: 1600-1930 Hardcover – January 1, 1968

ISBN-13: 978-0878300266 ISBN-10: 0878300260

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The Cut of Women's Clothes: 1600-1930 + The Cut of Men's Clothes: 1600-1900 + Corsets and Crinolines
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 394 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge (1968)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0878300260
  • ISBN-13: 978-0878300266
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 9 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #810,557 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Most useful. . . Recommended. -- Times Education Supplement
Serious and beautifully illustrated. -- Observer
A definitive work. . . Highly recommended. -- Library Journal
Rewarding to anyone interested in the history of women as people. -- Christian Science Monitor
The method is impeccable, the presentation flawless and the information fascinating. The scaled cutting diagrams are readily useable. -- Educational Theatre Journal
For more than 30 years Norah Waugh lectured and taught practical work in the Theatre Department of the Central School of Art and Design, London . . . Words cannot describe the completeness of this text. 75 cutting diagrams, 54 tailors' patterns and 71 plates of illustrations are so well aligned and explained that accuracy of both historical choice and technical construction can readily be achieved . . . A necessity for costume departments, its inclusion of delightful comments by `contemporary sources' makes the book pleasant reading for anyone. -- Choice: Books for College Libraries
When did long and slender replace static curves? Why didn't France ever adopt the mantua, which was all the rage in Spain? What impact did `ready-made' have on fashion? What did the growing independence of women in the late 1800s and beyond have on women's, and men's dress?. -- News Advocate

About the Author

Norah Waugh lectured and supervised practical work on historical costume in the Theatre Department of the Central School of Art and Design in London. In the late 1930s she was in charge of costume at the London Theatre Studio run by Michel Saint-Denis. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

It has every pattern diagram I was looking for.
Catherine A. Frazier
If you're a hard-core pattern collector and enthusiast, you need this book.
cynth
This is the most comprehensive of ANY book I have read on the subject.
yoreclothes

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

77 of 79 people found the following review helpful By cynth on December 18, 1999
Format: Hardcover
...from my library if my house were on fire, it would be this one.
I didn't know what "bombazine" was until I read its Glossary; I had never heard of Lucile until I turned to Diagram 67; I had never seen the accounts of Poiret and Lucile claiming to have both abolished the corset until I read the Quotations from Contemporary sources. Reading Jane Austen's descriptions of what her modiste planned for her next gown is amusing, as well as the anecdotes involving long trains.
This book is about more than the cut of women's clothes; it is an exegesis of costume history as seen through the eyes of its wearers and makers. It exalts the humble professions of seamstresses and patternmakers, and inspires modern designers through a scholarly reverence for technique.
I have graded up several of the patterns to usable working specs, but I don't recommend this to the casual sewer; one must have a solid background in pattern drafting to attempt this. (Although the Vionnet "flapper" dress is a good project for the beginner.) If you're a hard-core pattern collector and enthusiast, you need this book. If you're looking for EZ instructions for a period costume, buy a Folkwear pattern.
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31 of 33 people found the following review helpful By OzReader on March 8, 2006
Format: Hardcover
From a broad perspective this book is helpful in delineating the various periods of costume. The patterns are useful, but not plentiful.

However, the book has several shortcomings. Firstly it is printed on very cheap paper (this is a reprint version) and the black and white pictures/prints of paintings are very murky and badly reproduced on even thinner cheaper paper than the text.

The content of the book is fine for beginners but clearly the book has not been updated to reflect recent study on costume. The writing style is in the form of an endless stream of tit-bit information patched together making this book a boring read. Furthermore, the book is padded out with period quotations about costume, mainly in the form of inventory lists of costume. This adds little to the understanding of costume and the book should have been more tightly edited. Finally there are just not enough patterns in this book to make it a "must have" title - the patterns are not drawn on a grid so inaccuracies are inevitable. Anyone looking to find a variety of patterns for the period 1600 to about 1850 are going to be disappointed, but admittedly the period 1850 to 1930 is better covered by the book in terms of pattern variety. I will probably donate this book to my local library as it is not a keeper for me. Readers wanting up to date costume information are better served by acquiring texts from the various costume institutes in England.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 22, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is the definitive period costume book for historical patterns. Perfect companion book to The Cut of Men's, and Corsets and Crinolines, all by the same author. This book is not meant for beginners, but is an extremely useful tool in a university or college with a theatre or opera program. Worth the cost if you are serious about sewing and theatre, or historic reproduction.
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful By ReeQueen on May 25, 2004
Format: Hardcover
This is the first costume text I purchased (even before knowing I was going to go to school for costume design), and even after receiving and collecting loads of other texts on costume and the history thereof, this is still the best basic book I've come across. And, yes, I actually read it instead of just looking at the pics (of which there are many, many, great examples of historical dress). Although not entirely scintillatingly written (hard to do with a sometimes dry subject such as costume history, it has to be said), it is full of information that I wouldn't have otherwise known (and I've been fascinated by clothing all my life).
Across the arc of the book, one can discern the evolution of clothing, and it provides a good background for noting the changes across the years and why they were made. There is a lot covered within, and I feel it's a great source from which to start any kind of costume research.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 7, 1999
Format: Hardcover
There are a number of pattern books that should be in the library of every serious costumer, whether he/she costumes for theater/film or reenactment. Norah Waugh's _Corsets and Crinolines_, _The Cut of Women's Clothes_, and _The Cut of Men's Clothes_ are three of them. Buy and keep this book. It's worth every penny!
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A. M. Mullins on January 6, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I received this book for Christmas and couldn't be happier with it! I have not as yet attempted to draft one of the patterns, so I can't give my impression of that. However, I am impressed with the detail and extent of knowledge the author is able to share through the text! There is much more text than I had thought, and the detail is such that you can picture the garment, seam lines, trim, and all, from her descriptions! It is by no means a light read, but well worth the money to anyone interested in costuming, fashion design, or just clothing. The pages are filled with old fashion plates, paintings, and tailors' notes, along with sections of patterns relating to the time period discussed.
I highly recommend this book- an amazing read! After finishing it, you'll be an expert on women's clothing!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 12, 1998
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The only reason I would not give this book 5 stars is that it has no color pictures. The patterns in this book are both informative and useful. But there are no detailed instructionas and so I would not advise this book for anyone who is not an experienced sewer (unless they just like to enjoy the pictures!).
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