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Fashion Design Collections in the Kellen Design Archives

An overview of materials available for researchers interested in exploring the history of fashion using the Kellen Design Archives.


The Kellen Design Archives, a subset of The New School Archives and Special Collections, has many collections available for researchers who want to examine archival documents pertaining to fashion design, education, illustration, and marketing. This guide lists the collections under four categories, although there is often cross-over from one category to the next.


The Kellen Design Archives documents the history of Parsons School of Design back to its founding in 1896 by collecting materials produced by faculty, students, former students, and associates of Parsons. Because Parsons has been such an important design school for so long, and so many important figures in the design universe have either gone to school here, or taught here (or both), the Kellen collections can open a window onto many 20th (and 21st) century design practices, trends and changes.

We created this guide to help fashion researchers find Kellen Design Archives collections easily. Not all of our collections are in the library catalog, but if they are inventoried, they are included in this guide.

Fashion illustration for Saks Fifth Avenue by Esta Nesbitt