HomeCrafting Fashion and Dress in the « Longue Durée »

HomeCrafting Fashion and Dress in the « Longue Durée »

Crafting Fashion and Dress in the « Longue Durée »

Savoir faire de la mode et du vêtement dans la longue durée

*  *  *

Published on Wednesday, June 05, 2024


Si la mode, comme phénomène, est intrinsèquement liée au temps, au changement et à la notion d’éphémère, la temporalité des savoir-faire sur lesquels elle repose est bien moins fréquemment analysée. Comment peut-on ainsi considérer les liens entre le temps et le faire ? Les savoir-faire, les gestes et les savoir-incarnés dont dépend le renouvellement des formes ne s’inscrivent-ils pas dans une temporalité spécifique, un temps long du faire qu’il convient de questionner ? Qu’apporte à notre compréhension de la mode et du vêtement cette vision dans le temps des savoir-faire sur lesquels ils reposent ? Le colloque invite des contributions d’archéologues, d’historiens, d’historiens de l’art, d’anthropologues ou de spécialistes de la conservation-préventive, ou d’archivistes.


Conference - Paris, Sorbonne-Nouvelle / Paris I Panthéon-Sorbonne to be held on 28-30 November 2024


While fashion as a phenomenon is intrinsically linked to time, change and ephemerality, the temporality of the skills on which it is based has been less frequently analysed. How can we consider the interconnections between know how and time? What can reintegrating fashion and dress into the material skills and techniques that underpin them do to our understanding of fashion as a time-bound phenomenon?

The gestures and embodied knowledge on which fashion change is based point to another type of chronology, a longue durée of making, often more romanticised than really questioned, which the symposium aims to explore.

Embracing the longue durée, our chronology is deliberately broad, stretching from the Antiquity to the most contemporary period. The conference aims to explore the time of production and consumption of fashion objects as well as that linked to the acquisition and transmission of skills or to the transformation of fashion objects into heritage.

The temporality of the production of fashion objects will be explored through the study of manufacturing methods and the development of techniques and tools to speed up their production. Conversely, the incompressible time required to produce certain craft techniques such as lace, hand weaving or vegetable dyeing could usefully be brought into tension with the quest for efficiency mentioned above. Mechanisation, manual labour and a changed relationship with time are not simply issues linked to the 18th and 19th century industrial revolution, but have arisen at other moments in the long history of the skills related to dress and fashion, whether in textiles, millinery or shoemaking, featherworking, fur or leather, or the making of jewellery or other accessories.

Reintegrating fashion into its materiality will also enable us to examine the long history of consumption by looking at the skills involved in recycling, transforming and repairing clothes, which have been in use since the Antiquity. Reworking, repairing, re-dyeing and bringing outfits up to date are specific skills that have not always been studied by specialists of consumption.

Specialised manual techniques such as millinery, glove-making, shoemaking, embroidery, lace-making, dyeing, finishing, pleating, gold thread or artificial flower making, working with leather, felt or feathers are skills that have stood the test of time. While these techniques are sometimes presented as timeless, or as having remained unchanged over the centuries, we can look at the specific temporality in which they - and their transmission - are embedded: a temporality made up of continuity as much as adaptation and innovation. It's a timeframe that also raises the question of the persistence of know-how, at a time when the disappearance of training centres and the drying up of vocations risk bringing century-old skills to extinction.

Another area for consideration is the specific relationship to time of fashion objects in the museum. By removing them from their useful life, the museum setting inscribes them in a new temporality in which the issues of collective memory, heritage formation and conservation sometimes come into conflict.

The conference invites contributions from archaeologists, historians, art historians, anthropologists, specialists in conservation science and archivists. By taking an interest in the variety of sources, the issues involved in preserving them and the ways in which they are mediated, the project is also open to specialists in literature, photography and film, whose work examines the many representations of work. It also invites museologists and museographers to reflect on the specific issues raised by craft in the context of fashion and dress exhibitions - how to communicate know-how that is often, by its very nature, a matter of embodied gestures and knowledge. Beyond the academic circle, the project also aims to involve practitioners and professionals, whether in the field of heritage (curators, conservators etc.) or that of crafts, or even those working in workshops or fashion houses today.

Submission guidelines

To submit a proposal, please send a 300-word abstract with a biographical note (50-100words max)

by June 15th 2024

to Ariane Fennetaux, ariane.fennetaux@sorbonne-nouvelle.fr, Emilie Hammen, emilie.hammen@univ-paris1.fr

Scientific Committee

  • Ariane Fennetaux, Université Sorbonne Nouvelle
  • Emilie Hammen, Université Paris I Panthéon Sorbonne


  • Maison de la Recherche, rue des Irlandais / Paris I
    Paris, France (75)


  • Saturday, June 15, 2024


  • savoir faire, mode, textile, vêtement, technique, temporalité, chronologie, longue durée, muséologie, conservation préventive, craft, skills, dress and fashion, textiles, time, conservation science, museum studies


  • Ariane Fennetaux
    courriel : ariane [dot] fennetaux [at] sorbonne-nouvelle [dot] fr
  • Emilie Hammen
    courriel : emilie [dot] hammen [at] univ-paris1 [dot] fr

Information source

  • Ariane Fennetaux
    courriel : ariane [dot] fennetaux [at] sorbonne-nouvelle [dot] fr


CC0-1.0 This announcement is licensed under the terms of Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal.

To cite this announcement

« Crafting Fashion and Dress in the « Longue Durée » », Call for papers, Calenda, Published on Wednesday, June 05, 2024, https://doi.org/10.58079/11rsy

Archive this announcement

  • Google Agenda
  • iCal
Search OpenEdition Search

You will be redirected to OpenEdition Search