Strikingly, fashion designers now work with embroidery. On dresses, jeans and shirts, on shoes, purses and caps, everywhere you find embroidered décor – in skin couture as well as in the cheap fashion sector. It is no coincidence that in the age of fast fashion and mass production, this centuries-old technique of individual and detail-loving ornamentation has made a comeback. In form and material, the fashion industry stresses the historical reference and uses embroidery as a statement.
The exhibition shows on selected examples of its own collection over the centuries of the recurring importance of embroidery in fashion. Starting with fascinating works from Coptic time and Middle Ages, rich embroidery of the Baroque, works of the 19th century up to new acquisitions of the recent Grassimessen, it offers a foray through the history of fashion. Embroidery always filled the need to inscribe individuality and meaning into clothing. Earlier as today, fashion designers found inspiration in historical fashion and robes of foreign cultures. For this, the museum, which was first created as a model collection for traders and citizens, offers best examples. The contrast between historical and current fashion opens up new perspectives: Preciousness and fineness of material, ingenuity of artistic ideas and breathtaking craftsmanship skills will be experienced anew.