Step back in time with this fun and informative look at the history of fashion

Published on: 04 April 2019

Planet Fashion will have you reminiscing and perhaps even considering a wardrobe refresh. For older children and teens, it's a fascinating glimpse at when and why certain styles become popular – and the different cultures that they emerge from.

Take a look inside Planet Fashion by Natasha Slee, and illustrated by Cynthia Kittler – it's a great non-fiction read for children aged 9-13.

Shimmying down the Harlem Renaissance, USA, from 1920-1929 

The Harlem neighbourhood in New York City was a cultural mecca for black writers, artists, musicians, photographers and poets. It was soundtracked by jazz and the blues and fabulously extravagant fashion, with tasseled trims and feathered headdresses. 

Penning great novels with the Lost Generation in Paris, France, from 1920-1929

In post-war Paris, youth shook off the attitudes of their parents, embracing a life of parties and leisure. These trendsetters cut loose from the constraints of post-war fashion, and women embraced a functional but elegant style that gave them more freedom.

Sharing milkshakes at the diner, USA, 1950-1959

The term "teenager" emerged after the Second World War, as young men and women stayed in school longer, got jobs later and lived at home. While their parents wore carefully coordinated outfits, teenagers dressed in youthful clothing – poodle skirts, Varsity jackets and hair ribbons – designed especially for their age group. 

Clashing prints and stylish Mexican history, with Frida Kahlo (1907-1954)

Frida Kahlo was an artist with a distinct style. She created a look that not only expressed her love for Mexico, but hid her lifelong injuries from a road accident as a teenager. She also flaunted thick eyebrows and dark hair above her lip. Her joyful style had a lasting impact on fashion.

Blasting hip-hop on the boombox in New York, USA, from mid-1970s until 1989

Hip-hop first formed in an area of New York City called the Bronx. DJs experiemnted with their funk and soul records, inventing new techniques to repeat the beats and create scratch sounds, while an MC rhymed over the top. Hip-hop was about expressing your creativity and individuality, and looking "fresh" in designer labels. Think gold chains, pork pie hats and fat laces. 

100 years of shoes: a timeline from 1890s to 1990s

How did we get from the low-heeled shoe to platform trainers? You'll need to read Planet Fashion to find out. 

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