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The smock-frock was worn by countrymen in England and Wales during the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. It was essentially a practical garment and represented a true folk craft developed by ordinary people. It never became a fashionable garment for men although the technique of smocking has been used on women's and children's clothes since the end of the nineteenth century. It was unique in needlework, being both serviceable and decorative, and the work ranged from the simple, robust working smock for everyday use to the beautifully and finely worked smock for special occasions. The popularity of the smock-frock declined towards the end of the nineteenth century with the increased mechanisation of agriculture and mass production of clothing. Today the smock has regaine the respect it deserves as an important part of costume history. This book traces the development of the smock, its makers, its wearers and the revivals of interest which have taken place.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780852634776
ISBN-10: 0852634773
Format: Paperback
(200mm x 140mm x 3mm)
Pages: 32
Imprint: Shire Publications Ltd
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
Publish Date: 1-Feb-1993
Country of Publication: United Kingdom


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Author Biography - Maggie Hall

Maggie Hall's work as a freelance television costume designer has led her to develop an interest in folk costume and traditional needlework. She began making smocks in 1971 using patterns and designs from old smocks. In 1978 she received a grant from West Midlands Arts to finance research into the subject and travelled to many parts of Britain photographing old smocks and wherever possible recording their provenance.

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