The Empire's New Clothes: A History of the Russian Fashion Industry, 1700-1917. Christine Ruane. CT: Yale University Press, 2009. 276 pages. Hardcover, dustjacket. A systematic scholarly exploration of the impact of Westernization on Russia in the 18th and 19th centuries. A wealth of photographs of ordinary Russians dressed in their finery. The author uses memoirs, mail-order catalogues, fashion magazines and other period sources to show how Russia adopted Western fashion. It was Tsar Peter the Great who, in 1701, decreed that the residents of Moscow abandon traditional dress. Makers or sellers of Russian clothing would face “a dreadful punishment.” This set the tone for Imperial Russian history.
All prices are in USD.