The Museum at FIT is featuring a retrospective of Isabel Toledo called Fashion from the Inside Out, June 16 through September 26, 2009. The blurb on site says she’s “little known to the general public”, is that true? I’ve always been a huge fan (even more after she said this) and I’m notoriously out of the loop. As self effacing as Vionnet, she considers herself a technician rather than a fashion designer. I’ve heard there’s a catalog to accompany the retrospective available for purchase but I can’t locate the means to purchase one. If one of you goes, can you please contact me so I can arrange to buy one? Thanks. The photo at right is one of hers, I love this dress.
Long awaited, Les Arts Décoratifs museum in Paris is featuring a major exhibition of Vionnet’s work June 2009 through January 31, 2010. The website says the material is based on dresses and patterns (750!) the couturier donated in 1952. More information (in French) is here. Ann also mentions a new book about Vionnet will be published by Rizzoli in September; now available for pre-ordering. Since I still don’t have enough books, I imagine I’ll be getting that one too. In any event, if you attend this event, do tell all.
Lastly, did you know there’s an American Textile History Museum in Lowell MA? Recently reopened in June after renovations, the museum tells stories of American life through textile production history. It is also in part, a slice of women and labor histories. While not without controversy, the Lowell mills were the first mechanisms by which women could live, have the opportunity to be educated and earn independent incomes at a time when these were untenable. As you would imagine, the museum features the history of weaving technology. The museum also features interactive activities for children and families. Sounds like fun.