logo - Australian Dress RegisterObviously I’ve been living under a rock, as I’ve only just found out about the Australian Dress Register. However it’s not new, having been first  established in 2007 by Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum, and was originally restricted to clothing relating to New South Wales. More recently it has been opened up to include items of dress from right around Australia and have extended they timeframe up to pre-1975 clothing.

Why didn’t I know about it? Who knows! But anyway just in case it’s new to some of you as well, I thought I’d share it with you.

The Australian Dress Register is a collaborative, online project about dress with Australian provenance pre-1975, and includes men’s, women’s and children’s clothing ranging from the special occasion to the everyday wear.

So far the Australian Dress Register has around 200 items recorded. The aim is to build this number much higher so that it becomes a comprehensive research resource about Australian costume, and provides opportunity to compare and contrast costume items across small and diverse collections. Contributors are encouraged to research their garments and share the stories and photographs while the information is still available and within living memory.

Australian Dress Register screenshot

This site is simply fascinating, and it includes numerous filters to choose from when searching (by decade or by about 20 different costume types, such as ‘wedding’, ‘workwear’ or ‘evening dress’), making it very easy to navigate around.

And apart from documenting the clothing, it also has an extensive section on how to get started and sumbit an item to the Australian Dress Register, how to photograph your item, how to store your item, and a whole heap more. To list items on the Australian Dress Register contributors need to apply for a login through the website.


Here’s a little introductory video to showing you what the Australian Dress Register is all about …