Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Specialist Practice: The Janet Arnold Award

Today was the first day of my final degree year, and I have hit the ground running.
I have spent a lot of the Summer in research and preparation for this unit and today I really felt as if I had a good start.

I will be keeping a running blog as I work through this project; an academic blog, centered around processes and evaluation as a way of documenting what I'm doing.

Firstly, this week, whilst I make a start on the practical costuming I will be working out a realistic timetable, so I can look at it and know where I am and also write up my learning agreement which will explain the body of work that I will hand in at the end of the unit for assessment.

The Janet Arnold Award, run by The Costume Society, is an annual competition for GB students who are undertaking a relevant degree. A great costume historian, she produced four books in a series called The Patterns of Fashion, which are for all intents and purposes like a bible to costume students. In the competition you can pick any of the costumes she had studied to reproduce- to their original measurements, using as best you can, traditional methods of the time.
Historical garments are a huge passion of mine and so I felt this was a very apt oppertunity for 'Specialist Practice' as it is something I want to specialise in. During the Summer I visited a number of dresses from the books- all charming and all very different, ranging from as early as 1760-1878. For reasons that I will go into further in a subsequent post, I will be making a costume from 1878 The Victorian Natural Form Period.
I have photos to post from my first visit to the dress, again, in a further post. But for now I have a rendering from a fashion journal of the period(possibly Harpes Bazar or similar) to give a taste of the things to come.

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