Ryerson Fashion Research Collection

Opening the closet door to a Canadian fashion archive


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Special Topics Course Class Visit behind the scenes at the Textile Museum of Canada

by Ingrid Mida

Behind the scenes with conservator Hillary Anderson at the Textile Museum of Canada

Behind the scenes with conservator Hillary Anderson at the Textile Museum of Canada

Recently we had the great privilege of going behind the scenes at The Textile Museum of Canada. This museum houses over 13000 textile artifacts that span 2000 years of history and their stated aim is to enhance the cultural understanding of textiles. Our guide for the morning was the TMC Conservator Hillary Anderson, who is an alumni of the School of Fashion at Ryerson University. She had interned at the TMC during her undergraduate studies and went on to earn her credentials as a conservator. She mentioned how useful her skills in sewing, draping and cutting were in creating custom mannequin forms and for the myriad of other tasks that a conservator has to do.

During our visit, we got a sneak peak at some of the pieces that Hillary worked on for the upcoming show called Home Economics: 150 years of Canadian Hooked Rugs that will open on 24th September 2015 and run until 8 February 2016.

Sneak peak at the hooked rugs and conservation supplies

Sneak peak at the hooked rugs and conservation supplies

We also had the chance to visit the storage facilities with Hillary where the students learned about techniques of storage for different types of objects. And we all marvelled at the colourful and joyful Festival Hats worn by children.

Hillary Anderson holding one of the Festival Hats from the TMC Collection

Hillary Anderson holding one of the Festival Hats from the TMC Collection

We rounded out our visit with a tour of the Artist Textiles: Picasso to Warhol exhibition during which time Hillary explained some of the challenges of mounting dress. She also recommended two books for anyone interested in this topic including  A Practical Guide to Costume Mounting as well as Textile Conservation.

These types of behind-the-scenes visits are rare and special treats, especially since museum storage facilities are often not able to handle more than a few people at a time. But what is even more valuable is when someone as busy as Hillary Anderson is willing to share their knowledge. Thank you Hillary and thank you Textile Museum of Canada. If you have not had a chance to visit the exhibition of Artist Textiles: Picasso to Warhol, do be sure to get there before 4 October 2015.


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FRC Team 2015-2016

I am delighted to welcome two work-study students to the FRC team. They are Alys Mak-Pilsworth and Millie Yates. Both are upper year Fashion Design students with full schedules and big dreams, but there is a saying – give a busy person a task to do and there is no doubt that it will get done. Their talents will be used to best effect in helping me enhance the access and profile of the Fashion Research Collection.

Alys Mak-Pilsworth

Alys Mak-Pilsworth

 

Millie Yates

Millie Yates

We have big plans to add more images to the FRC website and create an enhanced social media profile. Stay tuned for exciting enhancements.


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Upcoming Event: ICOM Costume Committee Study Day

Balenciaga Gown and Bolero, ca.1955-1960, FRC1992.01.019ab

Balenciaga Gown and Bolero, ca.1955-1960, FRC1992.01.019ab

Ryerson University School of Fashion will be the host of the International Council of Museums Costume Committee Study Day on Tuesday, September 8, 2015.

This event is open to students who are interested in historic dress and/or museum studies and will be held on campus. A limited number of tours of the FRC facility will also be held.

Advance sign-up is required. Interested students must rsvp by September 3, 2015 to Ellen Holzan at ellenhlozan@hotmail.com. Seating is limited to 50 students. 

Programme Details:

12:00 – 1:00 Pre-event Tours of the Ryerson Fashion Research Collection

1:05 – 1:15 Welcome, Announcements, and History of Student Saturday/Tuesday Ellen Hlozan and Vicki Berger

 

1:15 – 1:35 Ingrid Mida, Ryerson Fashion Research Collection Co-ordinator, Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada –The Ryerson Fashion Research Collection and A Preview of “The Dress Detective: A Practical Guide to Object-based Research in Fashion” 

 

 

 

 

1:35 – 1:55 Isabel Alvarado Perales, Interim Director, Museum of National History, Santiago, Chile – The artistic representation as a source of knowledge of the history of women’s clothing in Chile: the case of José Gil de Castro and Raimundo Monvoisin

1:55 – 2:15 Vicki L. Berger, Ph.D., Retired Curator of Costume and Textiles, North Carolina Museum of History; Phoenix, Arizona, USA – A 1942 World War II American Bride: Anita Ruth Bonham Crawford

2:35 – 2:50 Q & A Session with first group of speakers

2:50 – 3:30 Refreshment break and Tour

 

Fashion Victims Cover3:30 – 3:50 Alison Matthews David, Ph.D., Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director, Fashion MA, School of Fashion, Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario, Canada – Preview of “Fashion Victims

 

 

 

 

3:50 – 4:10 Meg Wilcox, Wardrobe Supervisor, Sherbrooke Village Restoration, Nova Scotia Museum, Sherbrooke, Nova Scotia, Canada – Challenges and Triumphs in Costuming Historical Sites Challenges

4:10 – 4:30 Sofia Pantouvaki, Ph.D., Scenographer and Professor of Costume Design for Theatre and Film, Aalto University, Helsinki, Finland – Performance Costume in the Absence of the Body

4:30 – 4:45 Q & A with speakers

4:45 – 4:55 Farewell and Adjourn Ellen Hlozan and Vicki Berger

4:55 – 5:25 Post-event Tours