University creates world's first public menswear archive
By Judith Burns
A UK university has created what it believes is the world's first dedicated archive of men's fashion to be open to the public.
The archive, at the University of Westminster's Harrow campus, contains more than 1,000 garments. Highlights include designs by Alexander McQueen and Burberry, as well as rare military clothing.
It shows the impact military styles have had on menswear designs, says its creator, Andrew Groves. The archive's military clothing collection dates back to World War One.
'Social history' There are also key pieces from Jean Paul Gaultier, Barbour, Levi's, Berghaus and Comme des Garcons, said Mr Groves, a fashion designer and course director of Westminster's BA in menswear.
"It's like pulling together a social history of menswear in this country, which I don't think has ever really been properly looked at." he said.
"I think what's interesting about menswear is that it's a much smaller community and they're more open and wanting to support each other.
"I think it enables us to do things other archives can't do.
"It enables us to draw out those connections between military menswear and uniform and how that has impacted menswear design."