In the 1970s, Vogue Patterns magazine did occasional features on women who sewed most of their own clothes. As an added bonus, the editors asked the women why they had chosen particular styles. What could be better for someone interested in the history of how women dressed?
The wardrobe of Yale Art History professor Ann Coffin Hanson was a focus in one of the 1978 issues. Hanson, a very important person in her field, was the first female tenured professor at Yale. Read about her life and career here. All of that, and a talented seamstress as well! At around age 57 when the article was published, she dressed with in youthful style and proudly displayed her silver hair. I was particularly drawn to this work outfit. According to the article: “Anne thinks of the coordination [here] as her favorite campus uniform. She likes the cross-campus ease of the flared bias skirt …with the soft flattery of our deep cowl jersey…and the sleek chic of our unlined drawstring jacket.” (57)
Look at the styling here—the leather belt and Frye boots make her look hipper than any professor I had in the 1970s. In fact, if we replaced the skirt with jeans, her outfit would fit right in on campus today.