Technology Advances Fashion

The Yves Saint Laurent "Sardine" dress from the 1983 couture show that took 1,500 hours to complete

The Yves Saint Laurent “Sardine” dress from the 1983 couture show that took 1,500 hours to complete

I use so many processes in my work – some that involve the hand and some that involve the machine. For me, mixing the hand and the machine give the best results. I don’t think the hand or the machine have any use or value on their own. What matters is the form in relationship with the idea.” ~ Miuccia Prada 

In a way, the hand is being lost today. It’s important to me that a piece of clothing always feels like it has been touched by the hand at some point, even if there’s a lot of machine work involved.” ~ Sarah Burton

With just a week before it closed, I explored the exhibit at the Met: “Manus x Machina: Fashion in an Age of Technology.” I was extra lucky to experience it with costume designer and new friend, Katherine Winter, who has shared her story on TFIO. To see it through Katherine’s eyes, with her love of fabric and texture and construction, made this experience even more meaningful for me.

This exhibit was so informative; honoring the mix of hand made and machine made fashion for us to see up-close, and the beauty when designers blend the two: “We worked very close with our conservation department to create a sort of DNA reading of every garment, almost like a medical record of what is hand made and what is machine made,” said Andrew Bolton, Creator in Charge of The Costume Institute. The result was a creation of a stimulating yet soothing environment that allowed the slow down of the world of fashion; from the moment we walked in – the lighting, the music, and the layout of the room simply highlighted the clothing. We were there to see the beautiful clothes. And did we ever!

Karl Lagerfeld for House of Chanel: Wedding ensemble (back view), autumn/winter 2014–15 haute couture

Karl Lagerfeld for House of Chanel: Wedding ensemble (back view), autumn/winter 2014–15 haute couture

House of Dior, Raf Simons - Spring/summer 2014, haute couture

Raf Simons for House of Dior – Spring/summer 2014, haute couture

Christian Dior

Christian Dior

And of course, Chanel: my favorite look:

And of course, Chanel: Circa 1930’s –  always my favorite!

 

 

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