Clothing is the outward and visible sign of taste, discrimination, social attitude and status. In every culture, men and women pay enormous attention to the minutiae of dress and appearance. This study looks at both the social and physical aspects of clothes. It traces the history and development of clothing from the earliest times to the machine age, showing how fabrics, decoration, shape and structure, reflect and are affected by culture and technology. Drawing on first-hand experience of the exhibition of costume, this volume also covers the concepts, methods and practicalities of putting clothing on display and making it relevant and accessible to the general public.