torstai 31. toukokuuta 2012

Book: History of Costume by Carl Köhler

History of Costume by Carl Köhler
Dover Publications
464 pages
First published in english by George G. Harrap and Company in 1928.
Cover image by Amazon

I've been reading this little book lately. It's about the size of a pocket book, so it travels well in my bag and is not too big to dig up on public spaces and easily slipped back into the bag. It starts the historical timeline from the ancient times and goes up to the 1870, which is understandable when you look at the first publication date.

The book is full of information about men's and women's clothing, some of the garments are patterned in the book and can be remade from the measurements given (with adjusting). The book is well illustrated, this edition has all the images in black and white. The 1928 edition had some of the plates in full color. I felt that some of the images were in odd places and when reading, I needed to flip forward or backward to find the image that the book refered. Since I have a few books from this period, I'm taking it as the style of the layout.

The text in the book is well written and full of information. It's very academic language and it sticks to the facts known when written. The language is rather tiring reading, even if it is very interesting.

I'm still not knowledgable enough about how much the information has changed since this book was first written and if there are errors in the facts of the book.

To whom I recommend:
- Anyone interested in clothing history.

To whom I do not recommend:
- Anyone wanting to read a very academicly written book.
- People who need pictures to understand the text complitely. There's a lot of information in this book, more than the illustrations can cover, and in some points I felt that it was hard for me to understand because there was no picture to help me.

My general opinion of this book is good. It has a lot of the information about the ancient and middle age eras that are a black hole in my clothing knowledge. Yes, it's hard to read and understand at times, but with a dictionary and slow reading I've gotten throught.

I found my copy in eBay, but it's also foundable in Amazon.

Please note that this is purely my opinion and impression of the book!

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