Brookdale Community College recently received a beautiful collection of historical fashion magazines from Norman Lavine, president at Vintage Print Gallery and RetroGraphics Publishing. Lavine has been a collector of fashion magazines from the 1700s to the 1930s since the 1970s. At 79, he has decided to donate his collection to local colleges.

The collection that Lavine donated to Brookdale includes French magazines from the 1800s to the early 1900s, including large tissue patterns the women of that period used to make the clothes featured in the magazine. Also included are large lithograph prints taken from sample books like Chic Parisian that were distributed to Paris, London, and New York. They were used for women to pick a dress, and the company showing the book would order the dress from the manufacturer. There are also several editions of Harper Bazaar magazine from the 1860s, 1870s, and 1880s.

“Our students will be able to use the collection in our FASH225 Survey of Historic Costume class to learn about the types of dress from various time periods,” said AnnMarie Hughes, assistant professor and co-department chair of Fashion Merchandising and Marketing at Brookdale Community College. “We will also be using the collection in FASH121, Fashion Merchandising as examples of early forms of fashion communication and publications. Our other fashion classes, such as our design courses, may use them for inspiration in their own designs and collections. I think we will have a lot of opportunities to use them throughout most of our classes.”

The students all agreed, “It will be really cool to copy and use these patterns.” They are genuinely excited to read the publications and have them to enhance their learning experience.

Go to the Fashion Design & Merchandising website page for more information about the program at Brookdale. There are also seamless opportunities to advance studies to a baccalaureate program in Fashion Studies with formal agreements between Brookdale and other colleges and universities. For transferring after Brookdale, go to transfer resources

​Photo: Alexandria Montvoro, Grace Mills, Jay’la Stallworth, students in Fashion Merchandising, Judith Unger, assistant professor of the Library, who received the collection,  Nicole Callamaras, student, and AnnMarie Hughes, assistant professor of Fashion Merchandising and Marketing.