Sunday, August 5, 2018

American Style and Spirit: The Fashions and Lives of the Roddis Family, 1850-1995 Hardcover – November 1, 2016 by Jane Bradbury (Author), Edward Maeder (Author), Valerie Steele (Foreword), Jeanine Head Miller (Foreword) (Victoria & Albert Museum)

This book is beautifully written and the photographic artistry of this amazing collection is really wonderful! The really special thing about this book is the tie in between the fashion and the history of the times, not just as a historical study, but through the stories of a real American family. If you're a fashion buff, you will relate to the women in this family and the stories surrounding how they chose to dress and find a way to dress well even in tough times. If you're a history buff, you'll enjoy the deeper and more personal experience of how clothing represents the times. If you're both, then you really must have this book in your library!

Brought to life for the first time outside the attic in which they were stored for generations, here are more than 300 garments and accessories, beautifully preserved and complemented by archival objects, family photographs, and letters, as well as evocative descriptions of whom the garments belonged to, when they were made or bought, and even where they were worn—all by members of the Roddis family of Marshfield, Wisconsin. Author Jane Bradbury describes the joy of discovering the clothes when her aunt, Augusta Denton Roddis, showed her the astonishing collection. A remarkable resource, the book presents the garments and their designers in the context of the various eras in which they were created, from the turn of the 20th century through the 1920s and the Depression to the mid-1990s. Beautifully designed, this is a must-have for every fashion enthusiast.

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