Tag Archives: 2021

Fashion Era Series: Sumerian (#3)

The Sumerians are the earliest known civilization in the historic region of southern Mesopotamia.  Believed to have lived from c. 4100 – 1750 BCE. This part of the world can get very hot during the year, so some of the statues with few garments would not be out of line with the climate. 

In researching Sumerian culture, the images that are presented provide an account of the types of costume they would have worn during that period of time. It appears men wore what looks to be some type of robe maybe that they pulled over their heads – shoulder straps that connected to the back that was lower than the front. Most representations of men appear to wear a costume that is wrapped and tied about the waist. 

The Smithsonian has a statue “Rim-Sin Carrying Clay” – this is a statue of the King of that time. He appears to be rounded at the bottom half as if he were wearing what we would call a “skirt”. However, there does not appear to be a costume on his upper half. [1]

In the book Development of Sumerian Art by Wooley C Leonard[2], there are a handful of complete statues that definitively separate the male and female. The male continues to wear a costume on the lower half – in a circular shape (as such we would call it a “skirt”) and the women appear to have what appears to be a “strap” of same material as the rest of the costume – it goes around her one shoulder – it most likely connects the front and back parts of the costume.

In much the same way we study existing extant garments from before the 17th Century and thereafter, we can study the art, carvings, and symbols from a long-ago culture/society/people. Studying these items, provides much detail to their lives, and allows us to look in for ourselves. I have included several images below. These I clipped from the book that is referenced.

Leave a thought in the comments. What do you see in the images?


[1] https://www.si.edu/object/rim-sin-carrying-clay-foundation-deposit-figure:nmnhanthropology_8503940?edan_q=sumerian&destination=/search/collection-images&searchResults=1&id=nmnhanthropology_8503940

[2] https://archive.org/details/in.gov.ignca.33972/page/n77/mode/2up

Week in Review and Year of the Ox

Well, here I am again, on Friday morning writing this post. I had this whole thing sort of wrote in my head or how I wanted to write it. 

It has been a very busy week around here: from outlines for marketing plans and policy and procedure templates to PayPal accounts and setting systems for new clients. This is the part of owning a small business that I find tedious but necessary.)  

In the historic gown class I am taking we started on the sewing this week. I was working on that some yesterday, I needed a small break from the “busy” and hand stitching allows my brain to sort of slow down and relax some. (Right now as I am typing this there was a beautiful Blue Jay right outside my office window – he flew away, now there is a sparrow). There went the hawk, he was on the roof of my house. So graceful. 

So let me just admit, that I have a little attention problem today. It is Friday after all. So where was I again? Ah, yes, the busy of the week. The client’s historic recreation shirt and dress is moving along nicely. The pattern pieces have been completed and all materials and supplies have been delivered (Thank you Burnley & Trowbridge for being on the ball with your orders.) In fact, I cut out the pieces for the shirt last evening. I also began working with the dyes to get the right color for the dress. More tries today, the color had a little too much red. This is the fun part – I get to play with colors. 

I think that catches ya’ll up with happenings here…. Oh no wait, we have begun the face lift, or office destruction/construction, whatever ye shall choose to call it. This means that we (by we, I mean the cats and I) have moved out of the studio and into the large part of the basement temporarily. This is an adjustment for me, Anna and the cats take it all in stride. 

So today marks the New Year for the Chinese – they get a new animal every year (has to do with the transition of zodiac signs). So cool. This year is the year of the Ox. Their celebration can last up to 16 days, however, only the first 7 are considered public holiday. Their celebration culminates with the Lantern Festival. If you follow the link, you will find more information. I just thought it was interesting. Here in the states, our New Year’s celebration is well, one evening and culminates with the annual drop of the ball right before Midnight. Short, simple, not steeped in tradition, as we are a people of many cultures.