The Grand Tour – Cloth + Culture

The Grand Tour Cloth + Culture

Why Fashion

While some might dismiss fashion as trivial, it can be a powerful tool in examining societal trends throughout history. Fashion is much more than just pieces of cloth you wear every day, it is an art form that brings history to life. Fashion represents the lives and passions of the people who created and used them. Fashion, along with dress, cloth, textiles, and adornment, has been an important part of the study of culture. Fashion provides insight social currents, conveys quality of life and captures zeitgeist in visual terms of techniques of clothing, design, fit, and construction. It presents unique statements of creativity that speak to the human passion for beauty, adornment, and identity.  Fashion illustrates aspects of community life including civic affairs, working life, and the full range of personal and domestic life. These universal attributes extend across time and throughout cultures.

Why am I taking this trip?

I am taking this trip to study how technical advances, government actions, wars, and events in each country and abroad influenced the daily life of the people. To study how economy, currents of ideas and technical developments clearly affected clothing and fashion. To study how style, fashion and textiles has evolved by ordinary people solving problems. To meet people who are continuing to solve complex and simple problems while making life better for others. To become observer and someone who takes part in the everyday activities of the people by attending local gatherings and events. To understand how fashion is influenced by social and political circumstances and by changes in technology.

What am I studying

The history of fashion including: costume, attire, garments, apparel, fashion, clothing, haute couture, fashion designers, ready-to-wear clothing, the textile industry, accessories, physical culture, beauty and aesthetics, occupational apparel, military uniforms, sportswear, uniforms, state costumes, streetwear, youth culture and fashion, the music scene, fashion and art, history of fashion illustration, fashion magazines, fashion caricatures, fashion photography, traditional costumes (national and international), cuts, home tailoring, textile science, handcrafting techniques, customs, and etiquette, assemblage of body modifications and/or supplements, underwear, accessories, children’s garments, and doll’s clothes from each decade, all complemented by paintings and photographs from the collections.

What is the scope of the project

It is a Cross-cultural and trans-historical scope to explore the cultural and symbolic meanings of clothing. I will examine continuities and changes in fashion in the framework of socioeconomic and political transformation. With a focus on cross-cultural variation and the relationships between different parts of culture and their changes. A study of fashion as influenced by social technical advances, government actions, wars, events, political circumstances and changes in technology.

How will I do this?

  • By combing interviews, surveys, and other techniques with observation.
  • Research of text by fashion historians
  • Visits to Museums with costume & textile collections
  • Meeting and observing artisans in their work environment

 Why a Grand Tour

Nobles and merchants of the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries, regularly travelled through Europe visiting cities that were considered the major centers of culture at the time. This 12-months trip was not to study art: rather, it was to experience language, architecture, fashion, geography, and culture. social and cultural awareness. Grand Tours were also taken by young artist to experience artistic techniques at first hand. The tour gave people a chance to view specific works of art, and possibly the only chance to hear certain music. It gave them a chance to broaden horizons, make useful contacts, and most importantly created cultural and socially conscious tourists.

“It’s a beautiful thing when a career and a passion come together.”

~ Unknown