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Fashion and the Art of Pochoir

The Golden Age of Illustration in Paris

April Calahan, Cassidy Zachary


A celebration of the technique used to create some of the most luxurious fashion illustrations of the early 20th century

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The 1910s and 1920s witnessed an outpouring of luxury publications that used a hand-stencilling technique known as pochoir (French for ‘stencil’). The highly refined and painterly technique, which consists of applying layers of gouache paint or watercolour to achieve bold blocks of saturated colour, produced works of visual artistry formerly unrivalled in the history of illustration, and it became the medium of choice for avant-garde couturiers seeking to stand apart and cultivate an elite readership.

Organized chronologically by publication and showcasing a carefully curated selection of the most exceptional illustrations from couture albums and high-end magazines, Fashion and the Art of Pochoir is the definitive tribute to the artists and couturiers who first united to redefine luxury, inaugurating the enduring alliance between fashion and art, from Schiaparelli and Dalì to Vuitton and Murakami today.

Including biographical notices of illustrators and fashion designers, the book offers a unique chance for illustrators, artists, designers and fashion enthusiasts to discover the rarely seen images that defined a brief but magnificent golden age.

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'This beautiful book captures the mood of a great period of fashion illustration at its stylish and wittiest best. I loved it'
The Business of Fashion

'Stunningly beautiful'
Sewing World

Product Information

Book Details

Format: Hardback without Jacket

Size: 32.5 x 25.0 cm

Extent: 240 pp

Publication date: 12 October 2015

ISBN: 9780500239391

Contents List

1. The Art of Dress • 2. Poiret’s New Kingdom • 3. Queen of the Rue de la Paix • 4. Marin and the Modiste • 5. Stylizing ‘La Femme’ • 6. Opulence Resurrected • 7. Art, Fashions, Frivolities • 8. The Follies of Fashion • 9. In Style • 10. The Artist of Luxury

About the Author

April Calahan is Special Collections Associate at the Fashion Institute of Technology, New York, where she serves as the curator of rare books and periodicals.

Cassidy Zachary is a fashion historian and collections manager based in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She co-curated the Museum at FIT’s 2011 exhibition ‘Youthquake! The 1960s Fashion Revolution’ and currently works with a private collection of over 10,000 rare and valuable pieces of dress and textiles from around the globe.