Welcome everyone to the brand new Pincushion Book Club!
I realized after awhile that one of my favorite parts of our sewing classes is the various discussions we get into about the history of clothing, the impact of the fast fashion industry, and the lost art of sewing. Well, I decided to turn that favorite part into something even better, a monthly book club!
I've put together a year of books to read and discussions to have, all of them centered around the history of sewing and fabric, the politics of fashion, the future of the fashion industry, and the history of dress. Some of these titles were recommended to me and some were just found after doing some internet digging.
Each month we will read a different book and then have a virtual discussion on the last Tuesday of every month. You can sign up for the monthly discussion here. You can also skip to a specific month by clicking below:
Below you will find the various titles listed by month; you can join us for one or all of them! I've also added our Amazon Associates link to order your copy of the book. Other Las Vegas bookstores such as The Writer's Block or Barnes & Noble also carry a few of these titles.
I look forward to a year of reading and discussions with you all!
by Tanisha C. Ford
From the civil rights and Black Power era of the 1960s through antiapartheid activism in the 1980s and beyond, black women have used their clothing, hair, and style not simply as a fashion statement but as a powerful tool of resistance. Whether using stiletto heels as weapons to protect against police attacks or incorporating African-themed designs into everyday wear, these fashion-forward women celebrated their identities and pushed for equality.
In this thought-provoking book, Tanisha C. Ford explores how and why black women in places as far-flung as New York City, Atlanta, London, and Johannesburg incorporated style and beauty culture into their activism. Focusing on the emergence of the "soul style" movement—represented in clothing, jewelry, hairstyles, and more—Liberated Threads shows that black women's fashion choices became galvanizing symbols of gender and political liberation. Drawing from an eclectic archive, Ford offers a new way of studying how black style and Soul Power moved beyond national boundaries, sparking a global fashion phenomenon. Following celebrities, models, college students, and everyday women as they moved through fashion boutiques, beauty salons, and record stores, Ford narrates the fascinating intertwining histories of Black Freedom and fashion.
Women's Work: The First 20,000 Years
Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times
by Elizabeth Wayland Barber
New discoveries about the textile arts reveal women's unexpectedly influential role in ancient societies.
Twenty thousand years ago, women were making and wearing the first clothing created from spun fibers. In fact, right up to the Industrial Revolution the fiber arts were an enormous economic force, belonging primarily to women.
Despite the great toil required in making cloth and clothing, most books on ancient history and economics have no information on them. Much of this gap results from the extreme perishability of what women produced, but it seems clear that until now descriptions of prehistoric and early historic cultures have omitted virtually half the picture.
Elizabeth Wayland Barber has drawn from data gathered by the most sophisticated new archaeological methods―methods she herself helped to fashion. In a "brilliantly original book" (Katha Pollitt, Washington Post Book World), she argues that women were a powerful economic force in the ancient world, with their own industry: fabric.
Fibershed: Growing a Movement of Farmers, Fashion Activists, and
Makers for a New Textile Economy
by Rebeca Burgess