Photo of Aude le Guennec

Aude le Guennec

Dr, Dr

20082018
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Personal profile

Research interests

PhD, Paris-Sorbonne University (panel president: Anne Monjaret, assessor: Regine Sirota, Lou Taylor, supervision: Pierre-Yves Balut)

 

Title: The socialisation of children through fashion and clothing from the 18th century onwards, investigation in the public and private occidental museums' collections and archives. 

 

Abstract:

Despite the abundance of children’s clothes in the collections of French Fashion, Applied Arts and Folk Museums, Children’s Fashion is not a major topic in Fashion History. Crossing a corpus of artefacts with ethnographical, historical and sociological testimonies and archives from the Fashion Industry, this research intends to analyse the relationship between the child and its clothing. Despite its abilities to talk, manipulate and desire, the child is not imbued by the habits defining social beings. Therefore, in a constant interdependence with the adult, the child’s education consists in its socialisation to bring him into history. Through the analysis of the capacity of Fashion to dress the identities, this research approaches clothing as an education tool in the hands of the adults. In parallel, as a technical handling kit, a set of sensations and an object of desire, clothing is an adoptable system by the child who dresses up itself as it wants. In order to avoid an adult focus, this study looks also at the deconstruction of this socialisation process by analysing the appropriation of fashion by children. Finally, this study of children’s clothing provides another approach to Childhood History and shows the essential contribution of the study of the Material Culture to a Childhood Sociology, source of knowledge of the mechanisms of our society.

 

Children’s fashion: History, Anthropology, Design

After a specialisation in Fashion History at the University of Paris Sorbonne, I had the opportunity to work as the curator of the Textile Museum of Cholet, France. I’ve been in charge of the development of the collections and the programme towards children’s fashion. This has been the start of my studies for a better knowledge of this unknown field of Fashion. From 2005 onwards, I had the opportunity to work as a Free-Lance consultant for children’s fashion brands interested in using the roots of Fashion in their design as well as in their marketing and communication (e.g. storytelling, brand Platform…). These missions help my understanding of the specificity of children’s fashion in the fashion industry and feed my researches in a pragmatic way with strong examples taken from design experiences as well as social (customers) needs and uses. 

Despite its interest in the revelation of the adult’s behaviour and the social mechanisms, and its importance in the current fashion market, the history and analysis of children’s fashion suffers paradoxically of a lack of knowledge, illustrated with the very poor international bibliography on this subject. In the context of a PhD in Anthropology of the arts (University of Paris-Sorbonne, dept of Art History, under the direction of Prof. Pierre-Yves Balut), based on the technical and design study of European museum’s collections and contemporary fashion, my research is focused on the place of clothes in the education and socialisation of children. I’ve a particular interest in the way children can develop their own design and clothing methods through Western history and I work with contemporary designers, sociologists and anthropologists on the analysis of these processes. This research takes place in the context of the development of multidisciplinary studies on children’s culture and echoes the recent emphasizing of the children’s fashion market. It’s based on the observation of children in order to find out what they do and what adults want them to do (rather than they say they do) and, amongst other theoretical outputs, aims to create toolkits for the design or marketing projects.

The articles and exhibition books that I was given the opportunity to publish on this subject illustrate the methodology and develop some results of this research. Gathering the researchers and museum’s professionals specialising in this subject, these exhibition books published by the Textile Museum of Cholet under the title of “Small Couture”, because of the originality of their themes and high quality of contents, are considered as major contributions to the international bibliography on Children’s fashion. 

Archives and contemporary Fashion / Heritage and Fashion / Fashion and Museums: from Museum’s projects to projects for the Fashion Industry, I work on the relationships between fashion and heritage. Through the curatorial of museums exhibitions, the design of innovative marketing projects using museum’s archives for the creation and the conception of storytelling or brand contents based on the heritage and history of fashion brands, I’ve acquired an expertise on this specific subject. 

Exhibition practices in museums: new technologies in museum’s exhibitions, the particularity of fashion exhibitions (display of cloths, mannequins, lighting...)

Roles & Responsibilities

Lecturer in Fashion

Director of Fashion Studies

Fellow in Higher Education Academy

Biography

Fashion historian specialising in children’s clothing, Aude is currently completing a PhD on fashion as a social phenomenon through the study of children's fashion (Anthropology of the Arts, University of Paris-Sorbonne under the direction of Dr Pierre-Yves Balut). This research aims at analysing how fashion affects the education and socialisation of children.

As the keeper of the Textile and Fashion Museum in Cholet (France) and free-lance curator, Aude has been in charge of the development of a programme dealing with children’s fashion, the textile industry and fibre arts and crafts. She worked on the creation of a resource centre for the knowledge and conservation of children’s fashion, established the first French collection specialising in this sector and developed a cycle of exhibitions and publications dedicated to this theme. She was particularly keen at bringing together designers, fashion teachers, researchers and the industry to help the development of projects using fashion heritage as a field of contemporary design. In the context of research projects that combine the history of fashion and contemporary creative challenges, she had the opportunity to collaborate with the University of Angers and French Fashion Schools (Atelier Chardon-Savard, Esmod).

Lecturer in Fashion sociology and history since 2007, and Fashion course leader at the University of Angers since 2009, she has been involved in the creation of a « Campus Mode » looking at the innovation of fashion in an international context (www.campusmode.fr). From MA supervisions to the management of a vocational course focused on Luxury and ready-to-wear, she has worked on the connexions between education and industry, and on prospective research projects reflecting the reality and the future of fashion. 

Along with her academic duties, she works as a freelance consultant for companies who wish to enhance their history (story telling) and base their communication, marketing and design on heritage (Jacadi, Okaïdi, Catimini, Devred…). she assists designers and product managers in the implementation of marketing and creative tools that help anchor the brand in its past and fit the current fascination for DNA, memory and history. 

 

Since 2005: Free-lance consultant in fashion heritage

 

Marketing, communication, design and historical researches for the fashion industry: IDgroup (Jacadi, Okaïdi, Obaïbi), Catimini, Devred… (story telling, brand content, brand platform, historical and iconographic documentation for the design of collections, writing of commercial contents…)

Free-lance curator of international fashion and contemporary arts exhibitions: e.g. “Sport and Children’s fashion”, June-October 2011, International City of Lace and Fashion, Calais; professional fairs (e.g. Arts and crafts fairs: L’Aiguille en fête, Paris…); curator of exhibitions for fashion industries (e.g. organisation of in house exhibitions for CWF).

 

September 2009: Lecturer, Fashion course Leader, University of Angers (UFR-ITBS)

Fashion history and sociology / Fashion management and marketing / Museum studies / Exhibition management

 

Fashion course leader and professional coordinator: Vocational Bachelor, design and tailoring / Master in fashion management.

- Recruitment and management of the academic and professional team

- Selection of the students and definition of their research projects (tutorial, coordination…)

- Development of the pedagogical contents of the course, in charge of the annual design project of the Bachelor: conception and coordination of students’ collections

- Management of student projects (creations and researches for industry and designers)

- In charge of partnerships between the University and fashion brands: placements, vocational projects, fashion shows, events programme…

- In charge of the international development of the fashion courses: development of exchange programmes with London College of Fashion and University of Creative Arts. Part of development of a fashion course in Ningbo (China)

- Involvement in research programmes on fashion, innovation and heritage (Neopat, ICOM Costume, Costume-Textile,…)

- Lecturer in Fashion history and sociology at Esmod Paris, Atelier Chardon-Savard, ENSAMAA Olivier de Serres, International Business School La Rochelle…

- 2009: Consultant for the development of the Fashion School of Casablanca (Marocco)

 

August 2002-January 2010: Keeper of the Textile Museum of Cholet (France)

- Responsible for the development of the master plan and the application of the strategic plan of the Town council authorities: create a museum dedicated to Childrens’ fashion from 19th century onwards.

- Management of the budget of the museum and exhibitions (30K€). Development of sponsorships to maintain the budgets of exhibitions and provide a dynamic programme of events.

- Management of the museum’s staff and volunteers (students, Friends of the Museum Association).

- Development of the collections: acquisitions and study of children's fashion items from 1850 onwards.

- Re-display of the permanent collections: coordination and conception of the display of weaving and spinning machines, conception of a new visit in the bleaching factory (notices, signs, lights...)

- Research on the collection and specified subjects: cataloguing, acquisitions, conservation, storage, displays, loans, diffusion.

- Management of the exhibitions and displays (Art, fashion, textile and social history, cultural heritage): conception, coordination, design, management of staff (technicians, documentation, administration, logistic), and development of scientific and financial partnerships (industry, cultural institutions, research, exhibition's professionals) in France and abroad.

- Management of a creative and innovative programme of 4 exhibitions per year, related to children's fashion and fibre arts and crafts. Publication of exhibition books (one book per exhibition). Appointment of external consultants and contractors (free-lance curators, illustrators, editors, architects...). Management of multidisciplinary teams for the research and achievement of the exhibition's project.

- Enable and develop public access to the collections (visits, conferences) for a wide range of visitors. Development of the number of visitors: from 10 000 to 20 000/year in 5 years, thanks to a dynamic programme and a particular focus on learning activities

- Conception of the activities programme, organisation of workshops (textile arts and crafts) and lectures

- Development of projects with external partners (institutions, schools, university, museums, sponsors, tourist office)

- Management and development of the documentation centre.

The museum is now considered as a major fashion's museum for the study and conservation of children's fashion in France. Open and stimulating relationships with fashion industries, fashion curators, researchers,...

 

January 2006: Volunteer, National Museums of Scotland, Scotland and Europe Dpt

Dress and Textile Collection: recording of the 'Jean Muir' collection, researches in the Scottish Life Archives, researches on the children's fashion collection, conception of an exhibition’s brief on children’s fashion.

 

February - July 2002: Curator, Fashion Museum of the City of Paris

In charge of the contemporary fashion collections. Assistant for the exhibition "Marlene Dietrich": in charge of the relationships with the partners of the exhibition in Berlin (Filmmuseum), study of the collections in Berlin, recording of the collections.

Key Research Words/Phrases

Children, fashion, anthropology, history, museology, heritage, design

Research interests

Children’s fashion:History, Anthropology, design

After a specialisation in Fashion History at the University of Paris Sorbonne, I had the opportunity to work as the curator of the Textile Museum of Cholet, France. I’ve been in charge of the development of the collections and the programme towards children’s fashion. This has been the start of my studies for a better knowledge of this unknown field of Fashion. From 2005 onwards, I had the opportunity to work as a Free-Lance consultant for children’s fashion brands interested in using the roots of Fashion in their design as well as in their marketing and communication (e.g. storytelling, brand Platform…). These missions help my understanding of the specificity of children’s fashion in the fashion industry and feed my researches in a pragmatic way with strong examples taken from design experiences as well as social (customers) needs and uses. 

Despite its interest in the revelation of the adult’s behaviour and the social mechanisms, and its importance in the current fashion market, the history and analysis of children’s fashion suffers paradoxically of a lack of knowledge, illustrated with the very poor international bibliography on this subject. In the context of a PhD in Anthropology of the arts (University of Paris-Sorbonne, dept of Art History, under the direction of Prof. Pierre-Yves Balut), based on the technical and design study of European museum’s collections and contemporary fashion, my research is focused on the place of clothes in the education and socialisation of children. I’ve a particular interest in the way children can develop their own design and clothing methods through Western history and I work with contemporary designers, sociologists and anthropologists on the analysis of these processes. This research takes place in the context of the development of multidisciplinary studies on children’s culture and echoes the recent emphasizing of the children’s fashion market. It’s based on the observation of children in order to find out what they do and what adults want them to do (rather than they say they do) and, amongst other theoretical outputs, aims to create toolkits for the design or marketing projects.

The articles and exhibition books that I was given the opportunity to publish on this subject illustrate the methodology and develop some results of this research. Gathering the researchers and museum’s professionals specialising in this subject, these exhibition books published by the Textile Museum of Cholet under the title of “Small Couture”, because of the originality of their themes and high quality of contents, are considered as major contributions to the international bibliography on Children’s fashion.

Archives and contemporary Fashion / Heritage and Fashion / Fashion and Museums: from Museum’s projects to projects for the Fashion Industry, I work on the relationships between fashion and heritage. Through the curatorial of museums exhibitions, the design of innovative marketing projects using museum’s archives for the creation and the conception of storytelling or brand contents based on the heritage and history of fashion brands, I’ve acquired an expertise on this specific subject. 

Exhibition practices in museums: new technologies in museum’s exhibitions, the particularity of fashion exhibitions (display of cloths, mannequins, lighting...)

External positions

Visiting lecturer, Universite d'Angers, France

1 Sep 2009 → …

Keywords

  • GN Anthropology
  • Children
  • society
  • fashion
  • clothing
  • Education
  • Childhood studies
  • NK Decorative arts Applied arts Decoration and ornament
  • Fashion
  • design
  • style
  • Dress History
  • CC Archaeology
  • Museum studies
  • Heritage

Fingerprint Fingerprint is based on mining the text of the person's scientific documents to create an index of weighted terms, which defines the key subjects of each individual researcher.

museum Social Sciences
clothing Social Sciences
primary education Social Sciences
Sports Social Sciences
Socialisation Social Sciences
history Social Sciences
anthropology Social Sciences
education Social Sciences

Research Output 2008 2018

  • 4 Conference contribution
  • 2 Article
  • 1 Book
  • 1 Other contribution

Du musée à la thèse : vers un modèle d’étude du vêtement de l’enfant

le Guennec, A. Mar 2018 In : Tétralogiques. 23, p. 115-142 28 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Clothing
Education
History
Childhood
Socialization

Motifs d'enfance

le Guennec, A., Le Houëdec, . V. & Renonciat, A. 2013 96 p.Lyon : EMCC

Research output: Other contribution

specialization
museum
historian
education
history

Some thoughts concerning children's fashion

le Guennec, A. 2012 Endyesthai (To dress). Historical, Sociological and Methodological Approaches: Conference Proceedings, Athens, 9-11 April 2010. Athens: Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation, p. 94-98 5 p. (Endymatologika; vol. 4)

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Socialisation
museum
anthropology
sociology
history

Leçons de mode: quand l'enfant s'habille

le Guennec, A. 2011 303, 116, p. 62-73 12 p.

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle

Costume écossais et mode enfantine de 1850 à nos jours : les avatars du kilt pour enfant

le Guennec, A. 2009 Les costumes régionaux: entre mémoire et histoire. Lethuillier, J-P. (ed.). Rennes: Presses Universitaires de Rennes, p. 543-554

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Kilt
Avatar
Wardrobe
Outfit
Bourgeoisie

Activities 2013 2031

  • 2 Hosting a non-academic visitor
  • 1 Publication peer-review
  • 1 Other
  • 1 Visiting an external academic institution

Tétralogiques (Journal)

le Guennec, A. (Editorial board member)
31 Mar 2031

Activity: Publication peer-review

Dressed For School

le Guennec, A. (Recipient)
2018Sep 2020

Activity: Other

Emmanuel Cocher

le Guennec, A. (Host)
Jun 2017

Activity: Hosting a non-academic visitor

Xavier Dectot

le Guennec, A. (Host)
24 Aug 2017

Activity: Hosting a non-academic visitor

Universite d'Angers

le Guennec, A. (Visiting researcher)
Sep 2013 → …

Activity: Visiting an external academic institution