Creative Design: Professional

Iron and Rust in the Belle Epoch

  • Casey R. Stannard (Louisiana State University)
  • Mary Ratcliff (Louisiana State University)


The present design represents a collaboration between a metal sculptor and an apparel designer. The designers wanted to create a piece that highlighted the skills of each. The fashions and economic changes of the Second Industrial revolution were chosen as a source of inspiration for the design. The final design was inspired by fashion from the early 1900s and features a corset-style bodice and gored trumpet skirt. Ruffle mesh was utilized to further emphasize the frivolity of fashion and the importance of lace at this time. A high-necked yoke was also added as a nod to early 1900’s modesty. The design was made from a cotton twill that was rust dyed using iron grates to create a unique pattern. Finally, the cast iron bows were added to the bodice and neck to further emphasize the importance of industry in this time period.

Keywords: patternmaking, cast iron, historic, rust dyeing

How to Cite:

Stannard, C. R. & Ratcliff, M., (2020) “Iron and Rust in the Belle Epoch”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 77(1). doi:

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Published on
28 Dec 2020
Peer Reviewed