The folk costume books I have found most useful have been: "The Book of Kimono" by Norio Yamanaka, "Encyclopedia of American Indian Costume" by Josephine Paterek and "Folk and Festival Costume of the World" by R. Turner Wilcox.
Today I'm going to show you my collection of serious costume reference books that don't have patterns in them. Later I'll share my pattern books and masquerade costume books. I don't think I have that many books compared to other people I know. There are 70 in this category. I am cheap, so whenever possible I borrow books from the library or friends. And now, of course, we have the internet which is the biggest book in the world. That said, it is still very nice to have good books at home when you need them.
The biggest sub-catagory is general survey books. The one on top "What People Wore" by Douglas Gorsline was my first. This is filled with line drawings of paintings, many famous. And, artwork is one of the best costume resources. But, we can't always get to a museum and art books are expensive. My favorite one to see what clothes look like inside is "Costume in Detail" by Nancy Bradford. And I alway find "The Chronicle of Western Costume" by John Peacock great for a quick look to remind myself of the silhouette of a period.
And last ... this is my newest book. A really beautiful one I found out about at The Sewing Box Blog. If you visit this site scroll down to the posting of January 4 to see a bustle pad she made from this book.
These are the everyday sewing adventures of a designer and commercial pattern maker.
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