Marianne Moore: Poetry

March 29, 2012

“Dress and Kindred Subjects” I

Demonstrating her interest in fashion, Moore wrote an essay on “Dress and Kindred Subjects, a kind of  list by one who “[deplores] digressions from dignity and behavior in dress.” ( Women’s Wear Daily, February 17, 1965, pp 4-5.)  Were she to read this blog, she might be annoyed to find that pictorial images make bold to illustrate her superb verbal images. But as years pass, some readers will not easily call to mind why “Sandals require a thin White Rock fairy to wear them,” or how a suit by Ben Zuckerman looks, “roomy but snug.” Here, then, are some of the images imaged.

The White Rock Fairy

White Rock Beverages, known for their sparkling water, from the White Rock Products Corp.  located in Waukesha, Wisconsin.


Military cape with “Chinese straight-up collar”

The Borsalino Hat


Borsalino hats have been manufactured in Alessandria, Italy since 1857. Giuseppe Borsalino, the Company founder, developed from a 14 year old boy working in a hat factory to one of the most important Italian industrialists of the nineteenth century. When Giuseppe Borsalino died in 1900, his business employed almost one thousand workers and had an annual production of one million hats.

The Borsalino hat factory continues to be located in Alessandria. In 1986 it moved to a modern suburban location. The underlying style and craftsmanship that have symbolized Borsalino Hats since its founding remain unchanged.

The Stetson


Buffalo Bill in a Stetson

“In 1865, with $100 in his pocket, John B. Stetson rented a small room, bought the tools he needed and $10 worth of fur; and the John B. Stetson Hat Company was born. A year later the “Hat of the West” or the now famous “Boss of the Plains” hat was born

“Stetson hats are the most well known hats in the world. Wherever and whenever hats are discussed, Stetson will be recognized with distinction.

“Stetson is the standard in hats, the essence of the spirit of the West and an icon of everyday American lifestyle.” (From the Stetson Company website)

Ben Zuckerman

For I Magnan in Vogue, 15 August 1963

Romanian born fashion designer

My Fair Lady’s Evolution

Julie Andrews as Eliza Doolittle, Unreformed

And as Eliza, Transformed, from the Broadway Production, 1956

My Fair Lady, by Lerner and Lowe, tells of the transformation of Eliza Doolittle from humble flower seller to elegant lady

Madame Mensendieck

Bess Mensendieck Teaching Body Mechanics

An American physician, Bess Mensendieck (1864–1957) worked in Vienna to establish schools to teach exercises that would improve women’s posture

Fashion in the First Empire

First Empire Fashion

Napoleon strove to improve fashion after he became Emperor of France in 1804. His wife, Josephine, became a model of the new style.

Empress Eugénie

Empress Eugénie Mounted

Eugénie de Montijo (5 May 1826 – 11 July 1920), Spanish born wife of Napoleon III and  the last empress of France

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