Studio: international art — 20.1900

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A Palace of Dress

ROUND THE EXHIBITION. II. attraction for money-making purposes, and the

— A PALACE OF DRESS, fact that the French Government has considered

BY FREDERIC LEES. tne advisability of purchasing it, with the intention

of forming a permanent museum, is striking testi-

Written sometimes in the exquisite poetry of mony alike to the manner in which it has been

a golden age of dress, sometimes in the plain, formed and to its possibilities as an educational

honest prose of a more matter-of-fact period, institution. Class 85 of the Palais des Fils, Tissus,

the book of Fashion is one of the most et Vetements will be found to contain an exhibit

intensely human we can read. It is a book of women's costumes, including a large number of

in which has been written, mostly in a feminine historical examples of the Empire period, of the

hand, many strange and wonderful things, and the greatest value and interest to students of dress,

whole forms the most entertaining narrative extant But no systematic attempt has been made to give

of the characteristics of all peoples and all ages, an historical survey of dress, not even of those

Now long since closed, the word finis written on comparatively recent years which have handed

the last page, it forms a complete story, to which down to us genuine old examples. Only by a

probably little or nothing new will be added in more extensive programme, embracing the copying

the future. The female form has been clothed in of dresses from pictures and other sources,
every conceivable manner; all that
can be done nowadays, authorities

on to ■■■Bj^BB|hmh^^^h|^h|

changes on fashions of former ages. ;_ _ _■ ■

In short, we must go back to the
past—as we do in so many things
nowadays — for inspiration. And
yet, turning over the wonderful
pages, we are not as a rule wisely

Whoever are chiefly responsible
for the inelegancies of modern
dress—and it must be understood
that I here refer to woman's not
to man's dress, in which the ques-
tion of utility rules the day—the
fault does not rest with them alone.
Lack of taste in the public must
also be taken into account. And
in an age when the majority pay so
little attention to esthetics, is it sur-
prising that the powerof distinguish-
ing what is really beautiful is not a
common gift ? No attempt has
ever been made in this country, as
far as I am aware, to educate the H '-\, M

public in matters of dress; and

even in France, where the standard ^BiBB vjjT| j

of public taste is much higher than

in England, the experiment is only '. 1

just being made. What the result Sir J^BHmlt

of this experiment is to be it will

be of the greatest interest to note.

M. Felix's admirable Palais du

Costume at the Paris Exhibition

must be looked upon as much "queen cleopatra" i'Rom the original drawing

more serious than an ordinary by t. thouas

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