It is important for the history of fashion curriculum, to acknowledge the post-digital environment within which fashion and education now operate. One way to address this, is to move concepts of change in fashion beyond the singular narrative of fashion’s evolution that is visualised in the fashion timeline. This paper describes an approach to developing historical consciousness in fashion students who are native to the networked conditions of the twenty-first century. These students need frameworks capable of analysing the increasingly decentralised drivers of change in fashion, as well as developments in the fashion system that do not show themselves in garment styles and silhouettes. The study describes how visual metaphors have been used in the study of the history of fashion, to encourage students to view the changing characteristics of fashion from a range of viewpoints. It is an approach designed to open alternative discourses on change, as an inherent feature of fashion. Using these alternative perspectives, it becomes possible for today’s students to engage with the history of fashion in a more critical and reflexive manner, and better understand the interconnected and contingent nature of change in fashion, both, in the past and in the current context.
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