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Fashion History with American Duchess

History Podcasts

Join the American Duchess team as they discuss the wide array of topics and ideas behind all things related to fashion history. Interviews, discussions, reviews, shenanigans, and more!

Join the American Duchess team as they discuss the wide array of topics and ideas behind all things related to fashion history. Interviews, discussions, reviews, shenanigans, and more!


United States


Join the American Duchess team as they discuss the wide array of topics and ideas behind all things related to fashion history. Interviews, discussions, reviews, shenanigans, and more!






Episode 36: Interview with Michael Koropisz, Victorian Artist

In this episode we interview Michael Koropisz, an amazingly skilled portrait painter with a love of Victorian fashion. We wanted to get to know Michael a little better after he appeared in several online articles, so we had a nice long chat about art, aesthetics, his history, his love of Victorian clothing, costume vs. clothes, art for art's sake, and more. We hope you enjoy this casual chat. You can find Michael here: Website - Facebook -...


Episode 35: Designing American Duchess Shoes with Nicole Rudolph & Lauren Stowell

Designing historically-inspired footwear is trickier than you might think! Join Nicole Rudolph and Lauren Stowell as we have a behind the scenes chat about the process of designing and making American Duchess historical shoes. From spec sheets and measurements to choosing leather and trying on samples, we go in depth with some of the process, challenges, and development of our old-fashioned footwear line.


Episode 34: Exploring Different Types of Victorian Bustles from the 1870s & 1880s

Victorian women wore bustles to enlarge their hips, bum, and to give them the fashionable shape, but did you know that there was more than just one type of bustle? In fact, there were loads of different types! In this episode, we sat down with Christina DeAngelo (our beloved Operations Manager and all-around cool chick) to discuss her research into several different types of bustles that she's recreated over the years - from the Phantom Bustle to the Lotta, and everything in between (just...


Episode 33: How Covid-19 & Small Costume Businesses (ft. Cynthia Settje of Redthreaded)

It's been almost 2 months since Covid-19 turned our world upside down. As small businesses, we've been struggling with what to do, how to move forward, pivoting, and trying to out-think a pandemic. Featuring Cynthia of Redthreaded, this is a business-related episode, focused entirely on what we and Redthreaded have been doing to keep everything afloat while we isolate in our homes, and our costume-related events get canceled for 2020. Quick thinking, acting fast, and pivoting are normal when...


Episode 32: Study British Royal Fashion History with Dr. Sally Tuckett

Want to study Fashion History for Free (!) - by joining FutureLearn's Course "A History of Royal Fashion" ( you'll be able to learn about British Royal Fashion from the Tudor Era through the Windsors, with everything in between! This course is an excellent way to enjoy spending quality time at home, and learn some excellent dress history! Dr. Tuckett sat down with Abby last week to tell her all about the course, what it offers, how to enroll...


Episode 31: Examining Edwardian Clothes At GSA Archives with Dr. Robyne Calvert

In our last podcast episode, Lauren and Abby sat down with Dr. Robyne Calvert to discuss all things related to Artistic and Aesthetic Dress, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, Margaret MacDonald, the Glasgow School of Art, and Glasgow's own unique spin on clothing during the Edwardian Era. This week, we get to actually exaDaisy Anges McGlashamine the original garments that the Glasgow School of Art Archives brought out for us. Featuring a gorgeous embroidered velvet collar, velvet and fur capelet,...


Episode 30: Artistic Dress & the Glasgow Style with Dr. Robyne Calvert (Part 1 of 2)

Welcome to Episode 30 of our Podcast! We have been waiting to release this episode for *months* (almost a year at this point!) - last summer, when we were in Scotland working on the Isabella MacTavish Fraser wedding gown ( we were able to take some time to slip away to the Glasgow School of Art Archives ( to have a chat with Dr. Robyne Calvert about Artistic Dress and "the Glasgow Style" (& Glasgow has some of the best...


Episode 29: Behind the Scenes of our Second Book, The American Duchess Guide to 18th Century Beauty

When we sat down to record our new season of podcasts, we realized we had made a terrible error - we had never, ever done a podcast about our second book, The American Duchess Guide to 18th Century Beauty, which was released in JULY of 2019! (Oops.) So, we put our booties in the chairs and made sure we talked about the book, the only thing was, was that we didn't want to talk about what was in the we just kind of ended up talking about the experience of writing the second book, our...


Episode 28: Business Update: Royal Vintage is Merging into American Duchess

Welcome to a new season of the American Duchess Podcast! For our first episode of the season, we wanted to address some exciting changes that are underway at American Duchess. For years, we've been operating Royal Vintage Shoes as a wholly separate company from American Duchess (for a variety of reasons), but last year, we realized that it was time to merge the companies together, under the one name of American Duchess. So, as of early April 2020, American Duchess will be selling...


Episode 27: Historical Sewing and Victorian Dressmaking with Jennifer Rosbrugh

Last summer Abby (and eventually Lauren) got to sit down and have a lovely chat with the woman behind ( Jennifer Rosbrugh! Jennifer has been a figurehead of the historical costuming hobby for many years, and her blog (and workshops) have been an indispensable tool and reference for costumers of all levels. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the conversation! Jennifer Rosbrugh can be found: Instagram:


Episode 26: All about Shoemaking, Shoe Styles, and Historical Myths with Nicole Rudolph

Hooray! We've got another episode of Fashion History with American Duchess for you today! This episode features our very own designer, Nicole Rudolph (, a historic shoemaker and shoe-historian. Just like corsets, there is a lot of mythology about women's shoes and Nicole is here to bust those myths, explain why shoe-making is HARD to do, trends and styles of shoes, and even a little bit about her thesis topic. So prop your feet up, sit back, and...


Episode 25 - Charging What You're Worth With Cynthia Settje Of Redthreaded

On this episode of "Fashion History with American Duchess" we welcome back our friend and fellow business lady, Cynthia Settje of Redthreaded Corsets ( to discuss wages and charging what you're worth in the costuming and seamstressing world. Charging what your labor and skills are worth is a tricky balancing act that so many of us play. How much do I charge for my sewing? Is it too much? Is it not enough? and most importantly - "Does my [accidental] undervaluing of...


Episode 24: Lauren and Abby's Top 5 Historical Costuming Books

One of the questions we get asked the most is regarding what our favorite costuming books are. While it isn't always easy to pick favorites (usually it's easier to pick the ones we don't like - ha!) Lauren and Abby try to narrow their lists down to their top 5 picks. While there is some overlap, they do diverge on a couple of selections. Our Favorite Books Are: 1. Norah Waugh - Cut of Women's Clothes 2. Kyoto's Costume book(s) 3. Nancy Bradfield's Costume in Detail 4. FLORENCE (not...


Episode 23: Cheyney McKnight on African Hair And Headwraps

Yay! We're back with Cheyney McKnight ( to discuss the hair, headwraps, and head dress of Africans living in West Africa and in Colonial and Early America during the 18th and 19th century. As always, we learned so much from Cheyney (because she is incredible), and we think you'll really enjoy this episode. If you'd like to follow Cheyney or invite her to your school/museum/etc - you can find her at IG -...


Episode 22: Part 2 with Jenny Tiramani

It's Part 2 of our interview with Jenny Tiramani from the School of Historical Dress (! Continuing our conversation from last week, we go in to future book plans, more about Patterns of Fashion 5, and just general juicy costuming conversation. So sit back, relax, and go by Patterns of Fashion 5 if you haven't already! Blog: Website: Instagram: @AmericanDuchess Facebook: /AmericanDuchess


Episode 21: Jenny Tiramani, Janet Arnold, & the School of Historical Dress, Part 1

Woo! Are we excited to share with y'all Part 1 of our interview with Jenny Tiramani from the School of Historical Dress ( Jenny was kind enough to sit down and chat with us about her career, working at the Globe in London, how she met Janet Arnold, founding the School of Historical Dress, and best of all -- all the glorious details about their new book, "Patterns of Fashion 5: The content, cut, construction and context of bodies, stays, hoops and rumps...


Episode 20: 18th Century Dress Alterations With Carolyn Dowdell

We got to sit down with Carolyn Dowdell PhD while at Costume College to discuss the ins and outs of 18th century women's dresses, their constant alterations, how Victorians ruined everything, and a lovely lady named Gertrude. We had a great time with Carolyn, and we know that y'all will love this episode -- so many great nuggets of information! You can find Carolyn over at her blog, The Modern Mantua-Maker ( her Instagram (@modernmantuamaker) to...


Episode 19 - An Introvert And Beginner's Guide To Costume Events

Hooray for a Mini-Episode! Inspired by a social media posts, we decided to do a quick episode for introverts and beginners to costume events. We cover: 1. 90% of us are it's ok to be an introvert. 2. What to do at events. 3. What not to do. 4. Touching and physcial space at events - in or out of costume (Read: Costume is not consent y'all.) And just some antics and giggles from us as well. Remember everyone, we've all be new to the hobby and new to events, and we want...


Episode 18: Announcing NEW Kensingtons!

Hooray! We're back with a short and sweet episode devoted to giving you the quick run down about our new Kensington shoe offerings. While we don't get into the history of the shoe, we are just so excited to share with y'all all the new options with our Kensington 18th century shoe. The Pre-Order opens June 7th and goes until June 21st and if you want to see the pretty shoes and all of your options in person - head on over to Till next time! <3


Episode 17: Embracing Your Eccentric Historical Self with Zack Pinsent, Historic Tailor

Lauren and Abby finally get to sit down with the *incredible* Zack Pinsent - Historic Tailor to chat about all sorts of different things - ranging from how Zack became a self-taught Historic Tailor, embracing your eccentric self, and nuances of fashion and the concept of masculinity. At 23, Zack has a self confidence and ease with himself that is infectious, and is wise beyond his years. Not only are we impressed by Zack's tailoring skills, but also just by him as a young person who...