The Museum is excited to present Australian Men’s Style featuring 25 objects from the MAAS collection that touch on aspects of Australian men’s dress over a period of 200 years. From gentlemen’s attire in the early colonial period to post-World War II outfits and contemporary design, Australian Men’s Style will feature some of the milestones in the evolution of Australian menswear.
Inside the Collection
Jane Austen passed away on 18 July 1817 in Winchester, England, at only 41 years old. ‘… a true Indian muslin’ ? “Do you understand muslins, sir?” “Particularly well; I always buy my own cravats, and am allowed to be an excellent judge; and my sister has often trusted me in the choice of a gown.
Frocks may seem rather innocuous but dress was essential in the creation of colonial Australia. In the 19th century, appropriate attire was a marker of respectability and an expression of status, wealth and beliefs.
Whether frock, gown, robe or shift, regalia or rags, our clothes are and have always been culturally significant. We dress ourselves because it is custom, but also for acceptance, for status and out of caprice.