From sheep to chic: exploring the fields of indigenous textiles and fashion

    Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


    This paper aims to analyse strategies of distinction in the luxury segment of the fields of textiles and fashion, following the career of cloth through supply and value chains. The objects of enquiry are Scottish tartan and tweed, textiles that juxtapose the aesthetic values of hard-wearing longevity with the seasonal appeal of high fashion. We present a mix of primary and secondary data from relevant actors in both fields. The analytical distinction of textiles and fashion fields reveals that in textiles the technical aspects of the textile are valorized, yet cultural capital also plays an important role for agents who draw on authenticity and traditional patterns to establish symbolic value. In the field of fashion agents reach out to the artistic for prestige, periodically appropriating the cultural capital of the textiles, yet altering traditional patterns to suit the innovation and seasonality that marks distinction in the field. The place of ‘Scottishness’ in each field offers an interesting perspective on cultural capital in aesthetic markets. Scottish identity is a cultural reference in textiles and fashion that bestows an economic advantage whilst simultaneously producing a constraint on creativity.
    Original languageEnglish
    Number of pages14
    Publication statusPublished - 2014
    Event4th INTERREG Conference: Global culture and creativity - Guildhall, Winchester, United Kingdom
    Duration: 6 Nov 20147 Nov 2014


    Conference4th INTERREG Conference: Global culture and creativity
    Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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