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FIDM Museum
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Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti declared April 25 "La La Land Day," and we were happy to be part of the city's official celebrations! Our Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibition was extended one more day to welcome visitors, and we raffled off a DVD in addition to serving movie-themed concessions and picture-perfect La La Land cookies. FIDM Students participated in a design competition inspired by the film, and Costume Designer Mary Zophres selected the winning illustration by Olivia Mancivalano. La La Land-themed cookies, courtesy of Lionsgate! The finalists of the student fashion design sketch competition Winner Olivia Mancivalano... Continue reading
Posted 2 days ago at FIDM Museum Blog
“No one was more skilled at combing history and the far corners of the world for inspiration and translating these foreign motifs into contemporary Parisian terms.”[1] Paul Poiret is often credited with bringing elements of Far East design into French high fashion in the early twentieth century. Yet there were several forward-thinking houses that excelled at combining international inspiration with exquisitely-made couture garments. Callot Soeurs, a business run by the talented Callot sisters, was known for tunics, lingerie, nightgowns, and evening wear that incorporated touches of the exotic in the most elegant fashion. Whereas Poiret’s designs at times veered toward... Continue reading
Posted 7 days ago at FIDM Museum Blog
Our Curator, Kevin Jones, was at The Huntington Library, Art Collection, and Botanical Gardens today speaking to in-house docents about his favorite subjects: late-19th century and early-20th century fashion. His presentation was titled Dress in Diamonds: American Princesses and Gilded Age Fashion. Did you know our curators are available for private talks and presentations? Contact the museum to learn more! Caption: Consuelo (Vanderbilt), 9th Duchess of Marlborough, 1902. Dressed for the Coronation of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra. Continue reading
Posted Mar 28, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Visitors to our Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibition are consistently surprised at the level of ornate detail they notice in each costume. Subtle design elements give depth to the ensembles; construction techniques such as pleating, embroidery, leather work, and beading provide textures that make a costume three dimensional on screen. These details can also help the actor or actress feel connected to their role, and assist them as they build their character. For example, the purple silk tunic worn by Alice in Through the Looking Glass features top hats, rabbits, and stylized letter A's woven within the fabric... Continue reading
Posted Mar 24, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
The FIDM Museum is home to a robust collection of fragrance and beauty objects, from luxuriously packaged Lucien Lelong lipsticks to the suggestive glass bottle of Schiaparelli’s Shocking perfume. One name in particular among our signature scents remains relevant in today’s cosmetics industry: Estée Lauder. In honor of International Fragrance Day, we are sharing a selection of our charming Estée Lauder mini perfume compacts – tiny, collectible trinkets filled with solid scent. Introduced in 1967, production of these one-of-a-kind compacts are now an annual holiday tradition for the company. Perfume compact c. 1993-1997 Gift of the Annette Green Museum at... Continue reading
Posted Mar 21, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
The FIDM Museum is excited to announce the Lori and Sal Santamaura Summer Study Grant. Open to U.S. citizens, applicants should be enrolled in a graduate program in fashion history or museum studies; consideration will also be given to students beginning their graduate program in Fall 2017. The eight-week (35 hours per week) Study Program will introduce a student to the fashion-focused Museum field. This may include working on a collections-based project, cataloging, curatorial research, and installation experience. Additionally, the student will have the opportunity to shadow each FIDM Museum staff member and participate in educational field trips to other... Continue reading
Posted Mar 15, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
We are happy to join the global celebration of International Women's Day! Although the exact origins of this annual holiday vary depending on the source, most historians agree its formation is tied to the textile and garment industry. Much like the founding of the International Ladies' Garment Workers Union, International Women's Day was a response to the horrible working conditions found in factories during the Industrial Revolution. According to the United Nations, a 1908 demonstration of 15,000 New York City garment workers protesting poor wages, long hours, and dangerous working conditions inspired the creation of National Woman’s Day in 1909... Continue reading
Posted Mar 8, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
We are thrilled to share that Associate Curator Christina Johnson will be sharing her extensive knowledge on fashion designer Rudi Gernreich at the Costume Society of America's Western Region symposium. Modernism Mode: Fashions, Fabrics, and Interiors in Mid-Century America will be held on Saturday, March 11 from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. at California State University, Long Beach. Inspired by Frank Bros.: The Store that Modernized Modern, the symposium will feature noted scholars presenting their research on how the mid-century modern aesthetic was conveyed in American fashion, textile, and interior design. In addition to Christina Johnson, panelists include fashion and... Continue reading
Posted Mar 2, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
The name Max Factor is synonymous with beauty, Hollywood, and glamour. As an inventor, he created a new formula of makeup adored by movie stars and school teachers alike. As a businessman, he changed the way women viewed cosmetics forever. One of the most important names in beauty, and “the first to start manufacturing makeup on a large scale for regular women, Max Factor is rightfully credited with defining the makeup industry as we know it today.”[1] Maksymillian Faktorowicz grew up in Lodz, Congress Poland (a sovereign state that was once the Russian part of Poland) in the late 19th... Continue reading
Posted Feb 25, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Our institution is proud to house a robust collection of specialty materials relating to fashion, such as sketches, magazines, books, patterns, fashion plates, photographs, ephemera, and even personal designer archives. However, archive collections take an enormous amount of time and dedication to organize in order to make them accessible to students, researchers, and the public. We've had fantastic Library and Information Studies interns help us facilitate these projects (in fact, we're seeking one more intern!), and today's blog post follows the initial steps to ordering a scattered and delicate archive. Below, intern Marissa Maggs walks us through the process of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 16, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Experience the FIDM Museum's two new exhibitions with a unique day of live performances, delicious food, and educational talks and tours! We invite you to join us for the annual Fashion Council Royal Tea on Friday, March 3 at 1:00 pm. The day begins with a catered tea inside a lovely tent in Grand Hope Park. Associate Curator Christina Johnson will then speak about the Spanish influence on robe de style dresses of the 1920s, followed by an exclusive concert performed by LA Opera singers! We wrap the event with a private tour of our exhibitions Exotica: Fashion & Film... Continue reading
Posted Feb 13, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
It's our favorite time of year - the opening of two brand new exhibitions! We are thrilled to share with you the very special 25th anniversary of our Art of Motion Picture Costume Design exhibition, as well as Exotica: Fashion & Film Costume of the 1920s. Both exhibitions showcase phenomenal examples of design and creativity, and both provide a commentary on the mystical allure of Hollywood, onscreen and off. Our Social Media team was at the Press Preview of the exhibition to interview costume designers featured in the exhibition about their design processes, research methods, and creative inspirations. Keep reading... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Get all of the information you need to visit our upcoming exhibitions, opening Tuesday, February 7: LOCATION: 919 S. Grand Avenue Los Angeles, California 90015 HOURS: 10 am - 5 pm, Tuesday through Saturday Remember, our exhibitions are always free! 25th Annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design Costumes from Crimson Peak designed by Kate Hawley, 2016 FIDM Museum’s annual exhibition has become a tradition for LA locals and movie lovers alike. This unique show celebrates costumes that help bring memorable film characters to life, and gives visitors the opportunity to see the craftsmanship produced by Hollywood’s top costume designers.... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
The FIDM Museum is hiring! We are currently seeking a full-time Museum Coordinator to join our team. Please read the following job description and qualification requirements carefully. To apply, send your resume and cover letter to no later than Thursday, February 9th. We look forward to hearing from you! Job Title: Museum Coordinator Responsibilities: Museum Office Manager: Works with Museum Director and Museum & Gallery staff in preparing and tracking budgets for Museum & Galleries Oversee budget data entry in I5 system Organizes activities and events between the Museum & Galleries, Museum Shop, Fashion Council, FIDM Departments, and outside... Continue reading
Posted Jan 24, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Do you have a background in Archives or are you currently an MLIS student? We are looking for an intern to help process FIDM Museum archival collections. If you're interested, please contact Associate Curator Christina Johnson with your cover letter and resume: We look forward to hearing from you! Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
We are so proud of our growing Special Collections objects here at the FIDM Museum. Thanks to Associate Curator Christina Johnson's dedicated interest in historic photography, we have had the opportunity to amass a significant collection of photographs that teach us about the cultural context of fashion (you can read Christina's previous posts about historic photography on the blog here, here, and here). We were lucky to have archivist-in-training Marissa Maggs interning with us over the past few months; Marissa helped us catalog this important collection in our database, and created an organized and systematic method of storage. Eventually, all... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2017 at FIDM Museum Blog
Earlier this year, the FIDM Museum had the honor of participating in a special collaboration with Christian Dior - and we're finally able to share the stunning results with you! The famed French fashion house will celebrate its 70th anniversary in 2017. To mark this milestone, Dior partnered with Assouline to publish the ultimate anthology of the brand's history. The set will be comprised of seven individual volumes, one for each Head Couturier: Christian Dior (1947 - 1957); Yves St. Laurent (1958 - 1960); Marc Bohan (1961 - 1989); Gianfranco Ferré (1989 - 1996); John Galliano (1997 - 2011); Raf... Continue reading
Posted Dec 30, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
You may have noticed in recent visits to the FIDM Museum that we now have an updated History Gallery, a space where rotating exhibitions display objects from our Permanent Collection. We've already filled this special gallery with treasures in A Graceful Gift: Fans from the Mona Lee Nesseth Collection and ManMode: Dressing the Male Ego. We are excited to announce that on February 7, Exotica: Fashion & Film Costume of the 1920s will debut in the FIDM Museum History Gallery. This exhibition will be shown in conjunction with the 25th anniversary of our annual Art of Motion Picture Costume Design... Continue reading
Posted Dec 21, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
Fashion and music have always had a strong connection - think of Prince in his purple suits, the Spice Girls sporting distinctive character costumes, even the titular David Bowie song “Fashion.” Arguably the world’s most recognizable band, The Beatles cunningly used fashion throughout their career to communicate their onstage personas. Their transformation from teddy boys to beatniks, mod rockers to spiritual hippies culminated in the 1967 launch of a Beatles-owned clothing boutique in London. The FIDM Museum recently acquired a man’s brocade suit from the Apple Boutique, and it is a perfect encapsulation of the Peacock Revolution in 1960s menswear,... Continue reading
Posted Dec 9, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
Though the weather outside is frightful, we’re warming up in California with our latest exhibition Sun-Drenched Style at the FIDM Orange County Campus. This exhibition showcases the work of five women designers in mid-century California. It was important to us to highlight California women in particular; you may have heard the names Claire McCardell, Bonnie Cashin, or Tina Leser, and perhaps you’re familiar with their achievements in mid-century American design. Yet California women were equally important in this space, and their proximity to the lifestyles that embraced sportswear made their designs all the more relevant. These women worked to lead... Continue reading
Posted Dec 2, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
It's no secret that hats of the 19th century were a flight of fancy; this 1894-1897 chapeau by Madame Virot literally takes flight with a decorative bird head and feathers incorporated into the design. We only wish we could have seen the ensemble that was worn with this show-stopping topper! Hat, 1894 - 1897 French, Madame Virot Museum Purchase: Funds provided by Barbara Bundy 2008.37.9 This hat was featured in the FIDM Museum 2011 exhibition Fabulous! Ten Years of FIDM Museum Acquisitions, 2000 - 2010. An excerpt from the Fabulous! catalogue sheds light on Madame Virot and her relationship to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 22, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
“Something new under the sun! Something daring and different!” A 1946 California Fashion Promotion in the Chicago Daily Tribune proclaimed that West Coast fashion was at the cutting edge of casual clothes, designing on-trend sportswear that fit all aspects of a modern lifestyle. In the FIDM Museum's latest exhibition Sun-Drenched Style: California Mid-Century Women Designers, we focus on five women who contributed to California's reputation as a style center in the mid-twentieth century. Louella Ballerino, Margit Fellegi, Agnes Barrett, Addie Masters, and Rose Marie Reid understood the evolving wardrobe needs of women, and provided fashionable solutions that could adapt to... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
We're back with another edition of Confessions of a Curator, blog entries written by our Curators about their ongoing projects and special interests. Dog lovers, it's your lucky day: Associate Curator Christina Johnson treats us to a history of dogs in fashion, spurred by the gift of an adorable 1903 puppy fan from our generous donor Mona Lee Nesseth. Enjoy! ********************************************************************************************************************************** Fan, 1903 Maison Duvelleroy Adolphe Thomasse, artist Gift of Mona Lee Nesseth, 2016.975.12 Anyone who really knows me knows I love dogs. I always have—ever since I was a child. Growing up, our dogs were treated as beloved family... Continue reading
Posted Nov 2, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
All of us at the FIDM Museum were saddened to learn of James Galanos' passing at the age of 92 over the weekend. The Los Angeles-based couture designer was known for dressing the 20th century's brightest socialites, including Nancy Reagan and Betsy Bloomingdale. Galanos and Bloomingdale met at the Amelia Gray boutique in Beverly Hills; she later called his atelier "couture on Sepulveda Boulevard!" Bloomingdale admired his fine fabrics and beautiful construction, and remarked that his clothes were so well made, they could be worn inside out. Their relationship was highlighted in the FIDM Museum's 2009 exhibition High Style: Betsy... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog
We are less than one month from the opening of our FIDM Orange County campus exhibition Sun-Drenched Style: California Mid-Century Women Designers. We hope you'll join us for the opening day event on November 12, where you can enjoy California cuisine and lectures exploring the era's fashions and interior design. The women featured in the exhibition might not be immediately familiar to you; we are highlighting influential designers who made significant contributions to California style, but perhaps were not recognized nationally. Louella Ballerino was a celebrated designer known for incorporating elements of South American, Native American, and Mexican culture into... Continue reading
Posted Oct 19, 2016 at FIDM Museum Blog