The Fashionable Nurse
Six Decades of Stylish Function
The concept of "Where the Classroom is the Real World" is dramatically reflected in a recent collaboration between Lasell College's Fashion Department and Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital to commemorate the hospital's centennial celebration.
Lasell students in Fashion Design and Production (Solange Carpenter '14, Megan Dubord '14 and Sammi Yang'13) and Fashion and Retail Merchandising (Lindsay Feeney '14, L. Angel Morales '13, Natalie Sherwood '13 and Krista DiCarlo '13) worked with Brigham and Women's administrator Martina Lang-Stuart, Countway Library of Medicine archivist Cathy Pate and collector/scholar Frederic A. Sharf to produce a comprehensive public exhibition at the hospital.
Drawing up on their creative talents and research skills, the Lasell team helped shape the content of the Nurses' Uniform Exhibit which chronicles the evolution of nurses' uniforms throughout the first half of the 20th century.
"The compelling importance of female attire, in association with societal expectations, has a longstanding tradition," Jill Carey, Joan Weiler Arnow '49 Professor and curator of the Lasell Fashion Collection, tells Leaves. "Nurses' uniforms needed not only to function in various conditions of the profession but also adhere to certain aspects of style."
The Fashionable Nurse: A Study of Stylish Professional Dressing, 1910-1970, a handsome hardback compendium to the hospital display authored by Sharf, with Pate and Carey, features original illustrations by Yang and photography by Stephen Fischer, assistant professor of Graphic Design. The book contains a chapter on "Lasell College and Nursing," written by Carpenter and Carey.
The Nurses' Uniform Exhibit is on display through June 2014 on the second floor of Brigham and Women's Hospital, 75 Francis Street, Boston. The exhibit was made possible by the generosity of philanthropist Sharf, a longtime Brigham and Women's Hospital friend and donor, who specializes in buying archives of design drawings he researches and organizes for public exhibitions. For more information on the exhibit, contact 617.424.4300.