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Archival Work

The Refashioning the Renaissance project uses a wide variety of visual and written sources in order to gain access to dress and fashion at the lower levels of society. On this page we provide more detailed information about the different types of visual and written sources we use in our work.

 Written historical documents shed knowledge on a wide variety of aspects related to fashion, such as the ownership of clothing, everyday practices of fashion, and the dissemination of fashion knowledge among artisan populations. We also investigate a range of historical sources that reveal issues of the commercial, cultural, social and legal context that regulated the use and dissemination of fashion. We have done extensive archival research, studying inventories, printed sources, sumptuary laws, diaries, guilds records. So far, the project has successfully collected and transcribed 1227 inventories representing 36,664 garment or textile entries belonging to artisans in Italian towns Siena, Venice, Florence and Elsinore in Denmark. These will be made available for the general public through an online database.