5 Instagram Accounts That Belong in the Feeds of Fashion History Junkies

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1961 photograph of Melvin Okolsky
Photo: Courtesy of @DocumentingFashion_Courtauld

To know where fashion is headed, one must know where it has been. Designers, editors, and art directors have mined the past for decades to figure out which direction fashion will take. If you’ve noticed a resurgence of Baroque, Victorian, or Edwardian styles on the runways as of late (think Gucci or Erdem), these lavish looks have everything to do with borrowing from history.

In a recent interview, renowned Dutch trend forecaster Lidewij Edelkoort provided a reason for the return of historical styles, arguing that political and economic uncertainties prompt a desire for excess. “Theatrical clothes are going to be important,” she promised.

If you want to try your hand at anticipating upcoming trends, these five Instagram accounts will point you in the right direction. Fashion history junkies will also get a kick out of exploring the amazing stories provided by fashion curators like Timothy Long and thoroughly explicated accounts like that of The Courtauld Institute of Art, which dedicates a lot of time to documenting the pieces that it posts.

1

@HistoricalGarments

Historical Garments is an amazing resource for true vintage hounds because its hundreds of posts are  painstakingly indexed by year, fabric, and style – that means if you’re looking for examples of British wartime dresses from 1941, powdered wig styles from the 18th century, or mob styles from the 1920s, you can find it all under one well-maintained account.

2

@The_CorsetedBeauty

Where Historical Garments is broad in scope, The Corseted Beauty is far more narrow, specifically encompassing Rococo/Georgian, Regency, Victorian, and Edwardian period gowns. The account also concentrates on a gorgeous mix of art renderings that capture the styles and feminine spirit of the 18th century and earlier.

The Admiring Glance, by Auguste Toulmouche, 1868 💖💖💖

A photo posted by The Corseted Beauty (@the_corsetedbeauty) on

3

@TimothyLongFashionCurator

Timothy Long has one of the most enviable jobs on the planet – that of fashion historian and museum curator. His encyclopaedic knowledge of fashions of the past inform the diverse styles represented on his Instagram account. Occasionally, he uncovers magical surprises during his research, like handwritten notes from 1810 stitched inside a garment that he was studying. For rare finds and unique vintage stories, his account is a must-follow.

4

@ArtGarments

Art Garments deconstructs the sartorial details of period dress by zooming in on historical paintings from the Victorian and Edwardian eras in order to reveal their lavish details. From close-ups of bishop sleeves to lavishly embellished necklines, this account is a microcosmic look at clothing, shoes, and accessories as they used to be worn in centuries past.

5

@DocumentingFashion_Courtauld

The Courtauld Institute of Art is behind this cool Instagram account, which showcases styles from both modern and historical eras, and includes information about photographers, models, designers, and other sources that have influenced and altered the course of fashion history.

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