What Makes Great Fashion: 80 Masterpieces Explained

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What Makes Great Fashion showcases eighty outstanding fashion confections, from the birth of the industry in the mid-19th century to the present day, and defines the characteristics of the garments that render the design both influential and iconic. These range from the appropriation of other cultures, such as Jeanne Lanvin's exotic robe de style, to the radical transposition of proscribed elements, such as the use of underwear as outerwear by Jean-Paul Gaultier; some mark an overnight switch in silhouette, such as Christian Dior's Corolle line-dubbed the New Look -and the abrupt raising of hemlines inspired by Mary Quant's miniskirts. In some instances, the garments represent a desire to transgress the acceptable-Vivienne Westwood's punk hangman's sweater; in other cases they are evidence of a cerebral approach, such as the slashed robes of Rei Kawakebo for Commes des Garcons.