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The First Book of Fashion: The Book of Clothes of Matthaeus and Veit Konrad Schwarz of Augsburg

Ulinka Rublack, Jenny Tiramani

10 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0857857681 / ISBN 13: 9780857857682
Published by Bloomsbury Academic 2015-10-22, 2015
New Condition: New
From Chiron Media (Wallingford, United Kingdom)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The First Book of Fashion: The Book of ...

Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic 2015-10-22

Publication Date: 2015

Book Condition: New

About this title


This captivating book reproduces arguably the most extraordinary primary source documents in fashion history. Providing a revealing window onto the Renaissance, they chronicle how style-conscious accountant Matthäus Schwarz and his son Veit Konrad experienced life through clothes, and climbed the social ladder through fastidious management of self-image. These bourgeois dandies agenda resonates as powerfully today as it did in the sixteenth century: one has to dress to impress, and dress to impress they did.

The Schwarzes recorded their sartorial triumphs as well as failures in life in a series of portraits by illuminists over 60 years, which have been comprehensively reproduced in full color for the first time. These exquisite illustrations are accompanied by the Schwarzes fashion-focussed yet at times deeply personal captions, which render the pair the world s first fashion bloggers and pioneers of everyday portraiture.

The First Book of Fashion demonstrates how dress seemingly both ephemeral and trivial is a potent tool in the right hands. Beyond this, it colorfully recaptures the experience of Renaissance life and reveals the importance of clothing to the aesthetics and every day culture of the period.

Historians Ulinka Rublack s and Maria Hayward s insightful commentaries create an unparalleled portrait of sixteenth-century dress that is both strikingly modern and thorough in its description of a true Renaissance fashionista s wardrobe. This first English translation also includes a bespoke pattern by TONY award-winning costume designer and dress historian Jenny Tiramani, from which readers can recreate one of Schwarz s most elaborate and politically significant outfits.


[Rublack and Hayward] have beautifully reassembled the complete series of 137 colour images ... [from Schwarz's] extraordinary book.
- Times Higher Education

[T]he story of a life in clothes ... [Rublack and Hayward's] historical observations, especially on colour coding, are valuable keys to unlocking the period.
- Times Literary Supplement

The First Book of Fashion tells the fascinating story of Matthaus Schwarz (b. 1497), a bourgeois man in Renaissance Germany, who was as fashion-obsessed as the trendiest teenagers in contemporary Tokyo. Like them, he documented his changing styles in a series of painted "selfies," which he gathered together in a little "book of clothes," which has now been brilliantly analyzed by the scholars Ulinka Rublack and Maria Hayward. Together, pictures and text provide unprecedented insight into the role of fashion in the creation of one individual's identity.
- Valerie Steele, multi-award-winning fashion scholar and Director of the Museum at FIT, New York, US

An exemplary edition of an amazing document, whether we read it as evidence for the history of self-representation or for the history of costume, whether worn or imagined.
- Peter Burke, University of Cambridge, UK

The First Book of Fashion provides an extraordinary insight into the sartorial world of the sixteenth century. Rublack's exacting and lively scholarship re-writes our historical understanding of men's relationship with their clothes, and the stunning visual material brings Matthaus Schwarz alive for the twenty-first century.
- Christopher Breward, University of Edinburgh, UK

The First Book of Fashion is an extraordinary resource: an illustrated wardrobe inventory that not only lifts the curtain on clothes, but the cultural and personal contexts that shaped their wearing and their wearer. This jewel-bright little manuscript is a tiny treasure and I have nothing but admiration and praise for the authors commentary. - --- Susan J. Vincent, University of York, UK

Mentioned --- Fashion, Textile and Costume Librarians

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