Passage # 5Haute Couture Collection / Spring Summer 2011 - Dior by John Galliano. Image courtesy of Laziz Hamani. Commissioned by the ROM thanks to the generous support of the Louise Hawley Stone Charitable Trust. BIG TIME: took 500 hours to make; BIG SIZE: 175 metres of cloth; BIG EVENT: Last and most technically challenging collection by John Galliano for Christian Dior.
Men's trousersCotton, wool. c. 1925 – 1950. Nigeria. Gift from the Estate of Rev. A.W. Banfield. BIG SIZE: While the West African dress style values mass and the projection of stature, the most prestigious garments are assembled from the narrowest hand-woven strips of cloth - just two centimetres wide. BIG EVENT: Kings and clerics don up to eight layers of clothing for state events.
“Water sleeve” evening gownVivienne Tam, Jade Collection Fall 2011. Digitally printed silk. USA. Gift of Vivienne Tam. © Thomas Kletecka. BIG NAME: Vivienne Tam (Chinese-American) known for modern fashions based on Chinese imagery and traditions. BIG MESSAGE: Retro luxury meets glamorous 21st century China chic; references historic Chinese Imperial court robes and rank badges which clearly display a courtier’s status.
Abstract Fiberglas furnishing textileBy Owens-Corning for Co-FabCo. c. 1950 – 1954. USA. This acquisition was made possible by the generous support of the Textile Endowment Fund. BIG INNOVATION: Fibreglass textiles do not shrink, stretch, swell, rot, burn or wrinkle and are resistant to sunlight. BIG TIME SAVER: Low maintenance – no ironing - and ideal for the “servantless” needs of postwar housewives.