Fox Historic Costume Collection
Heralded as a “world-class collection of fashion and textiles” by the Wall Street Journal, the Robert and Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection (FHCC) contains more than 20,000 garments, textiles, accessories, and other related materials. The FHCC preserves a wide range of fashion history- from late renaissance textiles to Parisian Haute Couture to international high fashion from the mid-20th century onwards. The FHCC contains works by many of the most celebrated designers of the past such as Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel, Charles James, and Elsa Schiaparelli as well as more recent examples by Issey Miyake and Ralph Rucci. The Robert and Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection is the proud steward of the James G. Galanos Archive that includes over 700 ensembles and includes thousands of related materials such as sketches, swatches, and photographs from the personal archive of one of the most celebrated designers of the 20th century.
The Robert and Penny Fox Historic Costume Collection at Drexel University has its origins with the original acquisitions of the Drexel institute, when textiles were purchased alongside paintings, sculptures, silver, porcelain, and other examples of fine and applied arts. Donations from the extended social network of the Drexel family soon followed to further augment these holdings. As members of Philadelphia’s social elite, these Drexel family items were especially fine and included many early examples of French couture by makers such as Charles Frederick Worth, Ernest Raudnitz, and Jacques Doucet. These important early acquisitions were the foundation for what is considered one of the finest university costume collections in the United States.