Online Exhibit - The Shape of Fashion

Monday, Aug 31, 2020

Raleigh, NC 27601

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 For centuries women have squeezed, padded, and puffed up their bodies to fit different shapes, or silhouettes, that were fashionable. From massive sleeves to enormous backsides; from wide bell-shaped skirts to straight-and-narrow shifts—the look of the moment has always been in flux, changing along with societal roles and norms.

The Shape of Fashion explores how these fashionable silhouettes changed over time, particularly in women’s clothing, by introducing visitors to 10 very different “looks” from the 1800s and 1900s. The exhibit featured more than a dozen period garments that were once worn by North Carolina women, men, and children, as well as many photographs of additional pieces in the museum collection.

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