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4.0 out of 5 stars Great reference, especially for early clothing and hair
I received this book as a gift, and have found it very useful in creating accurate costumes, especially for the Medieval styles. The later (Victorian, Edwardian, etc.) chapters have been less useful to me because they offer limited examples of a few different garments from each time period. Fashions changed so much more quickly after the Renaissance, that a more...
Published on June 18 2003 by Elizabeth

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3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag
This book is the culmination of research done by Mr. Gorsline. He has recreated the illustrations based upon research done primarily in the New York Library system. Many of his drawings have a reference... but that reference isn't formatted in such a way you could actually find out anything useful. For that reason it's not a particularly good choice for serious...
Published on Nov. 9 2003 by Christine Doyle


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4.0 out of 5 stars Great reference, especially for early clothing and hair, June 18 2003
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Elizabeth (Milpitas, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: What People Wore: 1,800 Illustrations from Ancient Times to the Early Twentieth Century (Paperback)
I received this book as a gift, and have found it very useful in creating accurate costumes, especially for the Medieval styles. The later (Victorian, Edwardian, etc.) chapters have been less useful to me because they offer limited examples of a few different garments from each time period. Fashions changed so much more quickly after the Renaissance, that a more detailed look at the styles of each decade, or each year, in each locality after the 16th century, would be much more useful. The chapters on medieval and ancient fashions, however, are extremely useful to me, because the images are taken from contemporary manuscripts and illustrations and represent a time period for which we know comparatively little about the garments most people wore, although research continues. The drawings make it easy to see the line of each garment and its shape, which is very helpful in drafting patterns for such garments, and the illustrations of hairstyles and head coverings are also very clear and understandable. This book is most useful as one book in a library of costume publications, as it does not contain much, if any, information regarding fabric weaves, colors, embroidery, etc.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag, Nov. 9 2003
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Christine Doyle (San Jose, CA USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: What People Wore: 1,800 Illustrations from Ancient Times to the Early Twentieth Century (Paperback)
This book is the culmination of research done by Mr. Gorsline. He has recreated the illustrations based upon research done primarily in the New York Library system. Many of his drawings have a reference... but that reference isn't formatted in such a way you could actually find out anything useful. For that reason it's not a particularly good choice for serious "historical" costumers. But if you're willing to accept that limitation, it is a nice reference, particularly the collected drawings of hair and head coverings.
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2.0 out of 5 stars Designs minus beauty, Feb. 14 2003
This review is from: What People Wore: 1,800 Illustrations from Ancient Times to the Early Twentieth Century (Paperback)
This book contains a great deal of visual information on clothing throughout the world and through the ages. It makes a good reference. However, unlike Racinet's dazzling Historical Encyclopedia of Costumes, it is not beautiful. The images are functional, but not inspirational.
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What People Wore: 1,800 Illustrations from Ancient Times to the Early Twentieth Century
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