All posts filed under: Learn

What’s for dinner?

Who has been doing way more cooking at home than usual? Raises hand We don’t do a lot of eating out or getting takeaways, but with all restaurants closed for the 4+ weeks of Level 4 lockdown in NZ, cooking every meal showed how much premade food we do eat – and how much work it is to plan every menu in advance because you can only go shopping once a week. I don’t mind cooking. I do mind menu planning. Figuring out what to eat is hard work! Here are some of our favourites which have been in heavy rotation in the last few months. Bonus: they are all vegetarian or vegan, which is great if you’re trying to lower your carbon footprint. Spinach & Chickpea Curry I’m obsessed with this curry. It only has one major flaw: it uses a weird amount of coconut milk, and then you are left with half a can of coconut milk, and have to figure out what to do with it. I always use fresh spinach, and …

Dust coat, England or France, 1905-1908, Tussah silk, satin, floss silk, Victoria & Albert Museum, T.333-1987

Terminology: Tussah Silk

This post didn’t start out as a terminology post! I was going to show you more images from my Spring 1915 Standard Mail order catalogue – and thought I would do some terminology explorations along with it. I started writing about the dresses and the terms mentioned, and the post got longer, and longer, and longer… So I’ve cut it apart, and will just focus on one term: tussah silk. It’s featured in my least favourite dress on the page: the brown floral number with the ruched midriff. Tussah Silk (also  Tussar silk, Tushar silk, Tassar silk, Tusser silk or kosa silk) Tussah silk comes from a variety of silkworms that eat oak leaves, and other leaves high in tannin, rather than mulberry leaves. The tannin in the leaves gives tussah silk its characteristic pale gold colour. The filaments of tussah silk are much thicker and stronger than standard silk, and are oval instead of round. Because the initial threads aren’t as fine, tussah silk cloth has a coarser hand than regular silk, and often …

The Victorian Era: a timeline of world history, and how it intersects with fashion history

When I teach costume and fashion history one of my primary goals is to show that fashion doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Clothing is changed by what’s going on in the world, and what people wear can also change politics, trade, and world events. So I start every lecture with a timeline of major world events in the era I’m discussing, and reference back to those events as I lecture. I’m teaching Costume History for the Costume Construction Course at Toi Whakaari online for the next wee bit, and I’m trying not to make my students have to sit through hours of camera lectures a day – so I’m mixing up lectures, blog posts, quizzes, and other formats. I’m also trying to take advantage of the benefits of online teaching, rather than using it as a poor substitute for in-person. One place where a blog post is better than a lecture is links. And timelines with lots of links are the perfect thing to put online. The Victorian Era: Choosing themes for lectures is always …