Clothing in 17th-Century Provincial England
Author(s): Danae Tankard
Featuring detailed analyses of clothing culture in 17th-century provincial Sussex, this original study draws on previously unexploited sources to create an intimate and nuanced portrait of people and their clothes. An introductory chapter uses 17th-century literature to identify and explore contemporary ideas about clothing, the individual and society, as well as the relationship between London and the provinces and the causes and consequences of conspicuous clothing consumption.
Subsequent chapters look at the production, distribution and acquisition of clothing in Sussex and the participation of consumers in these processes; the role of London as a centre of fashionable clothing consumption and the experience of wealthier consumers in shopping there; the clothing worn by individual men, women and older children of the 'middle' and 'better' sort and the extent to which they participated in contemporary, London-driven, fashion culture. A final chapter examines the clothing worn by the poor, including vagrants, parish paupers and the 'labouring' poor.
With over 40 images Clothing in 17th-Century Provincial England offers a new window onto early modern experiences of clothing.
“What has been particularly interesting in reading this book is that it suggests that many attributes usually thought to have become common in the eighteenth century … were actually well established in the previous century. [It] enhances current scholarship of the period and provides greater understanding of otherwise ignored aspects of clothing.” - The Journal of Dress History