Clothing Cultures: Call for Submissions

Researchers need submissions from across the globe to determine the presence of a fashion network

by Kyera Giannini, Fashion Publishing

At the end of the Colloquia’s series of paper presentations, two professors, Doctors Carolyn Mair and Ian King of the London College of Fashion, switched up the format.  Instead of presenting a completed project they described a potential theory, one of Small World Networks that has yet to be tested in the fashion sphere.  Small World Networks spontaneously exist in almost every other sector of the natural world and connect groups to each other.  Obvious examples are roads and power grids, but the less obvious include neural pathways and friendships.  Local networks are strongly connected to groups nearby but grow weaker with distance.  The formation and dissolution of connections is partly random and partly predictable.   The researchers want to find out if fashion exhibits this same pattern, and in order to do that they need to get data from YOU.

The submissions consist of an article of clothing that has a narrative behind it.  Not simply where you bought it or who gave it to you, but why it’s important, how it speaks to your culture and how it fits into the context of your life.  The researchers are working on developing a semi-structured questionnaire to guide the responses.  Until it is complete, please contact them directly at the emails listed below for more details.  Once they have enough submissions, they can then begin studying the connections and patterns between the items to determine if a network exists.  How cool would it be to know that your piece of clothing is connected to others across the world?

For more information, please email Dr. Mair at:  or Dr. Ian King