Saturday, April 17, 2010

Go to the FIT Museum in Your Jammies

Want to see detailed glimpses of a vintage Claire McCardell or Dior without getting out of your pajamas? Or this lovely James Galanos, above? Of course you do! The FIT Museum has a small but fabulous online gallery that you should run, not walk, to check out. (You only have to run in the virtual sense. I love the internets!)

I would suggest you start with their Mid-Century Gallery. It has 78 couture items, which is a very small amount when you compare it to the Met's ginormous online database. But I prefer FIT's because of the wealth of info included with each entry. Just look at the detailed description of this McCardell "popover dress," which I am obsessed with, by the way.

You can zoom in very close, like on this hand-embroidered Dior:
The selection is top-notch. Another fabulous Dior!
I love the clever use of pattern on this McCardell day dress:
Two chiffon beauties by Desses:

Anyway, you get the point. Head over to the FIT Mid-Century Galley for some awesome inspiration. See you there! I'll be the one in my jammies.


  1. WOW. I am swooning over these. Thanks so much for the links!

    P.S. I gave your blog a shout-out on my blog yesterday:

  2. Great link! Thanks! The popover-dress looks amazing... Can't wait to see your version!

  3. Great link. Running there I am. There's nothing as awesome as the web.

  4. Oh oh oh ..... I'm in love - with it all. I remember that the V&A had a similar exhibition called the Golden Age of Couture

    Check it out you'll want to weep with admiration.

  5. WOW. I've spent entirely too much time poring over The Met's archives recently, but had no idea that FIT even had an online gallery! Can you guess how I've spent my morning thanks to you?

    I love that FIT includes historical details about the designs and lists the weaves in addition to the materials used. I wish the Met would do that!

  6. OH thank you! One of the things I miss most about living in NYC is the endless inspiration/resources for artists and designers or just culturally interested folks. While I will regret having this link when I am looking at gowns at 2 am instead of working on my thesis...
    melina bee

  7. Uh! Great links. I have also been obsessing over the popover dress since I saw it in a book some years ago. I keep returning to it when I doodle. One day, I am going to make it up...

  8. Oh my goodness, I am so obsessed with that brown dress in the last photo. I saw it a few months ago in a book of vintage clothing (can't recall the title, sorry). The weaving on the bodice is gorgeous!! Thanks for the link, I'll go check out the others.

  9. Oh no... more gorgeousness to distract me while I'm meant to be doing far more mundane things... I'll have to use that site as a reward system (eg. one peek after every 100 words I write) or I'll never get any work done!

  10. That check print dress is insane!!
    I love all the different ways it was used to give the dress shape!

  11. I couldn't help mentioning this post on my blog either ..
    by the way I'm translating a book about kimono right now, and found this gorgeous blog... lots of beautiful pictures, so inspiring!

  12. *drool*

    I hadn't checked to see if FIT had an online database in awhile. Egads! This is definitely going to be on my list of things to browse over this week! Loads of yummy inspiration!

    ♥ Casey
    blog |

  13. How awesome, thanks for the tip! Excellent inspiration for all of us not close enough to visit the FIT museum. Better not check it out till I'm at home (rather than work), as I could probably spend hours there!


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