Imperial Chinese Robes
Focusing on the dress and accessories of the Qing dynasty (1644–1911), this exquisite book captures the grandeur of the garments worn by emperors and empresses for defined formal engagements. In Qing dynasty China there were clear rules on what to wear on different occasions. Official dresses were worn when the emperor performed sacrifices at the Temple of Heaven and at other important rituals. Auspicious dresses were for New Year, birthdays and weddings. Military dresses for troop inspection; Travelling dresses for hunting and royal visits to provinces, and Ordinary dresses for events of a non-celebrative nature, such as mourning. When not performing public duties, however, the imperial family could freely choose which garments to wear – and this book also illustrates these more casual clothes with colourful and stunning fashion dresses made for the court ladies.
Ming Wilson is Senior Curator in the Asian Department at the Victoria and Albert Museum, where she is responsible for the Chinese collection. Verity Wilson worked for 25 years at the V&A as a curator in the Far Eastern Department. She is the author of Chinese Dress (V&A 1997) and Chinese Textiles (V&A 2005) and co-author of World Dress Fashion in Detail (V&A 2002).