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High Style: Masterworks from the Brooklyn Museum Costume Collection at The Metropolitan Museum of Art Paperback – February 10, 2015
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Top Customer Reviews
The author doesn't just recite the garment details, she talks about the designers shown here, long forgotten as well as the better known. Valentina is here, for instance. Examples from Charles James that I had not seen before. Many others! Not a few of these garments came from well known socialites. Lavish full length studies in glorious color. For me, it was worth both the expense and the wait to get this. Wonderful examples shown, something for everyone! Details you can SEE. By the way, some of the garments seen here have had pattern graphs taken from them in Blanche Payne's "History of Costume", the older edition.
Sadly, the Brooklyn Museum simply doesn't have the resources to keep these clothes or mount any exhibits. This explains why there was nothing to see when I went in the past. Rather like Snowshill Manor's excellent collection (some of which were graphed by J. Arnold); the clothing has now moved elsewhere and seen seldom. Barnard Castle in Britain was another museum that auctioned their costume collection off completely.
Having said that, the Brooklyn Museum is a fine one with many other treasures to see, should you make the journey. Buy the book now, before it's out of print and you have to mortgage your house to buy a copy.
The section on Charles James is alone worth it, since it is next to impossible to find great photos of his work.
I wish more Costume history books were like this with actual full color photos. And the photos are big, not tiny stamp-sized images that make your head hurt.
If you're like me, you hate to invest money to get a book filled with crappy line drawings.
This is what I want in a fashion book. The actual photos are in full color, with front and back shots.
I am so glad Amazon gave me access to such a difficult-to-find book. Thank you.masterpieces are made.
The images are very clear and are not grainy. There are also a few nice detail pictures as well (but not a lot) There are also nice descriptions of the images with what the item was made out of and also the designer and year and if they cannot determine the designer what country they are believed to come from. There are also descriptions about seams and other information about textile as well.
I have already poured through this book several times and I think you will too!
Stuff I like:
1) The pictures in this book are fantastic. Extremely professional, vibrant and taken at angles that show of the pieces to advantage. Each piece gets its own full page photograph so the details are quite visible.
2) There are items from every era from the 18th century to today. According to the book, there are 25,000 items in the collection. The editors had to pick and choose and I think they did a good job trying to get something from every era and mode of dress in here.
3) The book is done chronologically, starting out in the 18th century and going forward. As you read about each piece, the editors also give you a fashion history lesson of sorts by succinctly describing why modes of dress were changing at specific time periods. I'm a fashion history buff and there was quite a bit of information in here that I didn't know.
Stuff I didn't like:
There are several articles of clothing in the book where the photograph of it is only from the back. The editors talk about the entire piece including the front in pretty complete terms so it seems weird that you can't see something from the front. This only applies to about two or three items that I can see so it doesn't really affect the quality of the book overall.