Campus Fashion: 150 Years of College Style

The Ohio State University is celebrating its Sesquicentennial Anniversary this academic year so we thought we’d take a look at what students have been wearing around campus for the past 150 years. Being located within a university, we thought for sure there would be some artifacts with documented history of having been worn to college, and we were not disappointed. Throughout this exhibition, you will find clothing with history of having been worn to not only OSU, but other colleges as well. When we could not find something having college history to represent a particular time period or decade we wanted to highlight, we filled in with items from the Collection that would have been similar to what students would have worn. Our choices were based on research among the photographs of OSU’s Archives, many of which we included here. This exhibition could not have been possible without the access and assistance we were given by OSU Archives staff:Tamar Chute, Kevlin Haire, Michelle Drobik and Tyler Osborne.

Among the artifacts we found in the Collection were items made and/or worn by former students and faculty in the School of Home Economics. I suspected there were more out there, so we sent out a notice to our alumni and received several responses. We are highlighting those student projects along with a look back at the early days of Domestic Science and its evolution into Human Sciences as we are known today. We were aided in gathering alumni information with the help of Sean Thompson, Director of Alumni Relations, and the Internet stalking skills of Marlise Schoeny when we could not talk to the alums themselves.I hope you enjoy the exhibition half as much as we did in pulling it together.

--Gayle Strege, Curator

Please visit the exhibition gallery page to view images from inside the gallery of each section of the exhibit.