9th June 2018

Sewing Reality: Fashion in Non-fiction Media

University of Bedfordshire, Luton Campus, UK

As two distinct art forms, fashion and film have flirted with each other in symbiotic relationships since the dawn of the medium: from British and American actualities showing current high-street fashion, to French newsreels capturing fashion shows. The synergy has been mutually influential also as far as other media are concerned, with pop stars and television dramas inspiring catwalks and collections. While the literature on film and fashion is quickly growing, this interest has primarily focused on fiction and includes, among others, works on the construction of femininity and masculinity through costumes, the definition of national identities through cinematic clothing, and the haptic pleasure of fashion in film. Non-fiction material remains an understudied source, with only a few scholarly works shedding some light on early cinema’s attention to the fashion world, still and moving images in fashion archives, celebrity and fashion, but also make-up culture and TV entertainment, the relationship between austerity and sewing/knitting programs, and the political potential of fashion documentaries.

This interdisciplinary symposium wants to fill this vacuum and excavate and reassess the role of non-fiction media in shaping our understanding of fashion across multiple platforms and different national contexts. The event aims to create an open space for dialogue between fashion and documentary studies, drawing from different methodologies and approaches: media and cultural studies, ethnography, audience research, marketing and public relations.

Sewing Reality aims to discuss the interconnection between fashion and media industries, the audiences of factual moving images about fashion, as well as the past, the present and the future of fashion documentaries.

See project




. Book presentation at ‘Le Consequenze della Moda’ curated by Valeria Oppenheimer, radio programme, Radio RAI, Rome, Italy / speaker







FASHION INDEX, The Goldsmiths Fashion Research Unit, Goldsmiths University, London, UK, Sept. 2015


MA.DE GOLD, Goldsmiths Design Festival, Goldsmiths University, London, UK                                Essay presentation, title ‘Bodies in Project. Fashion, Cinema and Body Representations’ - Research study, Goldsmiths University. From 3rd – 9th September 2015.

THINKING THREAD, Constance Howard Gallery, Deptford Town Hall, Goldsmiths University, London, UK .19 March - 17 April 2015
. .Presentation of the video ‘BLACK GARMENTS (2015).


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