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New York’s Met Takes a Feminist Look at Global Fashion

New York’s Metropolitan Museum has pulled the curtain back on its latest blockbuster exhibit, showcasing women couturiers many of whom have been kept in the shadows of obscurity until now.

One of the centerpieces of the “Women dressing women” exhibition is a dress by pioneering African-American designer Ann Lowe who was largely ignored in her day, even though she designed Jackie Kennedy’s wedding gown in 1953.

The muslin dress is exquisitely detailed, sporting silk roses and intricate taffeta.

Three decades before Jackie O stepped out in Lowe’s masterpiece, forgotten French fashion house Premet released a dress designed by Madam Charlotte called “La garconne.”

“This ‘little black dress,’ predates Chanel’s successful take on the garment by three years,” said Mellissa Huber, associate curator of the Met’s Costume Institute.

Through the 80 pieces by 70 creators, the exhibition also looks at the art of womenswear from the 20th Century up to the modern day, as well as the environmental advocacy of designers like Gabriela Hearst and Hillary Taymour.

“The biggest overarching takeaway is really to celebrate and demonstrate the incredible range and diversity of women designers who have been present throughout history and who have made so many meaningful contributions to fashion,” said Huber.

“We aspire to dispel the stereotypes that women are more practical than men, or that they all designed with themselves in mind.”
For women, the story begins in the anonymity of sewing workshops to which they were often relegated.

Source: Fashionunited