Richly illustrated with examples of clothing from UPM’s collections and photos from period journals and other historical sources, this book is devoted to the period from 1940–1970, when fashion in Czechoslovakia evolved under the impact of two totalitarian regimes – Nazism and Communism. Although the war-period clothing style drew on the previous period when Czech fashion and haute couture flourished, it was strongly limited by the war events. The brief period between 1945 and 1948 was characterized by a rapid return to the pre-war standards of dress and fashion; however, this process was forcibly halted in 1948. The newly-installed Communist regime saw clothing as a very important tool for its ideological struggle. In collaboration with the other “People’s Democracies”, a fashion was to be designed that would reflect the “New Man and Woman” and would be independent of the so-called international fashion. It was only in the second half of the 1950s that ideological pressure was gradually relaxed, which in turn re-introduced world fashion into the country in the 1960s.
Irrespective of these limiting factors, exclusive fashions were designed and created in Czechoslovakia. This trend was owed to designers, superb cutters, tailors and dressmakers, who had received their specialized training and practice before World War II. Garments produced by the Oděvní tvorba clothing company and in the design workshops of Textilní tvorba (the precursor of the Institute of Interior and Clothing Design in Prague, ÚBOK) were officially presented at domestic and especially foreign shows as achievements of Czechoslovakia’s textile industry.
The publication was issued by the OLYMPIA publishing house in cooperation with the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague to accompany the exhibition held in the Museum of Decorative Arts in Prague, December 2000 – February 2001.
texts: Konstantina Hlaváčková, Eva Uchalová, Jiří Pernes, Jan Mlčoch
editions: English, Czech
translation: Anna Bryson, Lucy Doležalová
photographs: Filip Habart
graphic design: Clara Istlerová a Matěj Šuhájek
binding: hardback, 30.3 x 22 cm