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Costume History

Resources on the history of dress, clothing, and costume for fashion, retail, and theater / theatre

Finding Books in the library: It's a Word Game.

When I try to search ALICE for costume history books, I have several problems:

  • Words changes over time and place: Is it stays, bodies, jumps, bodice, or corset?  

  • The spelling for the same word changes over time and place. Spellings weren't standardized until the 19th C, and don't forget British vs. American spelling (Ex: color, colour).

  • English just has a lot of words that mean similar things.  Search them all!  

A Few Words to Start With
  • Clothing 
  • Costume
  • Dress
  • Fashion
  • Garment
  • Textiles
  • Fabric
  • Cloth
  • Fiber
  • Material  .... and those are just the general terms for costume.  

Books: Where Do I Find Them?

Topic Call Numbers Location(s)
Human Beauty, Dress, Costume, Fashion, Costume History GT 495- GT2370
NK 4700- NK4890
6th floor
3rd floor
Textile Trade, Fashion Industry HD 9850- HD 9970.5 6th floor
Retailing HF 5423 –  HF 5437 6th floor
Specific department stores, History HF 5465 6th floor
Retail display HF 5845 6th floor
Textile Design, Fibers, Needlework   NK 8800 – NK 9595.5 3rd floor  
Theatrical costume PN 2067 7th floor
Textile Dyeing TP 893- TP 897 7th floor
Fashion Photography TR 679 3rd floor
Textile Manufacture and Industry TS 1300- TS1869 7th floor
Clothing Trade, Tailoring, Designers TT 490- TT 675 7th floor
Needle Crafts TT 679- TT 855 7th floor

Note: for every call number, more items might be shelved in Reference (2nd floor), Reserves (4th floor), or Oversize Shelves (3rd, 6th, 7th  floors)