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It’s Got Pockets! The Complicated History of the Humble Pocket

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 (Stephanie Ewens Photography)

Pockets. They are something you don’t notice, until you don’t have one to stash your phone, wallet, keys, or the random Walgreens receipt. Invented in the 16th century, pockets have had a unique trajectory in fashion. Men’s clothes are full of practical pockets. Women’s clothing, not so much. In her new book “Pockets,” design professor Hannah Carlson explores all the ways this “humble component of dress” reveals how we live. We’ll talk with Carlson about the origins of pockets, what their contents say about us and the gender politics at play in their design. Could you live without a pocket?


Hannah Carlson, senior lecturer of apparel design, Rhode Island School of Design; author, "Pockets: An Intimate History of How We Keep Things Close"


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