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Louise Crewe

Associate Pro Vice Chancellor (Education and Student Experience) and Professor of Human Geography, Faculty of Social Sciences

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Expertise Summary

I undertake research on fashion, consumption, retailing, exchange and value. My current research interests include the following.

(i) fashion fandom and the impact of the internet on consumer communities, fashion knowledges and co-production. Particular fan-communities that I am interested include jeans and trainers. I delivered an invited paper at the V&A museum in the 'Fashion Matters' programe entitled 'Fashion & The Internet' in March 2009. I presented a keynote address to the Retail Institute of Scandinavia in October 2009 on future fashion, evocative objects and the internet. I received ESRC funding to explore fashion and e-commerce.

(ii) the architecture of fashion and how buildings, like clothes, have agency. We feel them. I have given presentations in Boston, USA (2008) and a key note address in Milan, Italy (2008) on this theme. I have a paper in press in Environment and Planning A entitled 'wear:where: buildings and bodies as the new syntax of the city', to appear in a theme issue of the journal entitled 'The Cultural Economy of Space Design'.

(iii) lists, collections, object value and the impossibility of erasure. I am currently writing a piece entitled 'Life Itemized' on this theme.

(iv) object meaning, placement and value in home consumption. I am interested in the agency of domestic objects and questions of form, fit and failure. I have a paper in the November 2009 volume of Design and Culture (November 2009) entitled 'The drum & the screen: on form, function, fit and failure in contemporary home consumption'.The article focuses on two particular objects (vacuum cleaners and televisions), and considers why consumers desire particular domestic objects and how they assemble, arrange and use things in the home. It reveals how object value and meaning is mobile, diffuse, relational and temporary. I have a paper that has recently been published in the Journal of Consumer Culture (Sage) (with N. Gregson & A. Metcalfe) on Practices of object maintenance and repair.

(v) retail interiors and space. I am collaborating with an Italian architect and interiors expert, Francesca Murialdo, on this theme (www.studiometrico.com)

(vi) fashion as embodied and emotional practice. The role of authorship and ownership as determinants of the value of clothes. I am interested in the fashioned body as a site and space of creativity and anxiety and explore the creation of value through wear and use. I have contributed to an ongoing blog on this theme (uglybeautiful). See link www.food-afters.blogspot.com and have published an article in Geography on the ugly-beautiful fashion industry

(vii) the role of craft, quality and localisation in fashion production and consumption. I have been awarded a research grant (January 2009) to study the craft of fashion and the ongoing importance of quality production and consumption in spite of global economic recession. Creativity and innovation can flourish during times of economic hardship and consumers may be shifting their shopping preferences away from 'fast' disposable, fickle fashion items towards more considered, sustainable and ethical garments that speak of longevity and quality. The project will investigate the enduring appeal of quality, bespoke garment production and consumption that slows down the pace of disposability and offers more enduring ways of doing fashion.

(viii) second hand and alternative consumption (car boot sales, retro shops, charity shops). See book Second Hand Cultures (Berg 2003) for more.

(viii) Beauty (aesthetic management, the body, gender, hair, cosmetic surgery)

(ix) Luxury consumption

(x) Sensory clothes

Teaching Summary

Exploring Human Geography

Geography of Fashion

Dissertation

Tutorials

Research Tutorials

Research Summary

I undertake research on fashion, consumption, retailing, exchange and value. My current research interests include the following.

(i) fashion fandom and the impact of the internet on consumer communities, fashion knowledges and co-production. Particular fan-communities that I am interested include jeans and trainers. I delivered an invited paper at the V&A museum in the 'Fashion Matters' programe entitled 'Fashion & The Internet' in March 2009. I presented a keynote address to the Retail Institute of Scandinavia in October 2009 on future fashion, evocative objects and the internet. I received ESRC funding to explore fashion and e-commerce.

(ii) the architecture of fashion and how buildings, like clothes, have agency. We feel them. I have given presentations in Boston, USA (2008) and a key note address in Milan, Italy (2008) on this theme. I have a paper in press in Environment and Planning A entitled 'wear:where: buildings and bodies as the new syntax of the city', to appear in a theme issue of the journal entitled 'The Cultural Economy of Space Design'.

(iii) lists, collections, object value and the impossibility of erasure. I am currently writing a piece entitled 'Life Itemized' on this theme.

(iv) object meaning, placement and value in home consumption. I am interested in the agency of domestic objects and questions of form, fit and failure. I have a paper in the November 2009 volume of Design and Culture (November 2009) entitled 'The drum & the screen: on form, function, fit and failure in contemporary home consumption'.The article focuses on two particular objects (vacuum cleaners and televisions), and considers why consumers desire particular domestic objects and how they assemble, arrange and use things in the home. It reveals how object value and meaning is mobile, diffuse, relational and temporary. I have a paper that has recently been published in the Journal of Consumer Culture (Sage) (with N. Gregson & A. Metcalfe) on Practices of object maintenance and repair.

(v) retail interiors and space. I am collaborating with an Italian architect and interiors expert, Francesca Murialdo, on this theme (www.studiometrico.com)

(vi) fashion as embodied and emotional practice. The role of authorship and ownership as determinants of the value of clothes. I am interested in the fashioned body as a site and space of creativity and anxiety and explore the creation of value through wear and use. I have contributed to an ongoing blog on this theme (uglybeautiful). See link www.food-afters.blogspot.com and have published an article in Geography on the ugly-beautiful fashion industry

(vii) the role of craft, quality and localisation in fashion production and consumption. I have been awarded a research grant (January 2009) to study the craft of fashion and the ongoing importance of quality production and consumption in spite of global economic recession. Creativity and innovation can flourish during times of economic hardship and consumers may be shifting their shopping preferences away from 'fast' disposable, fickle fashion items towards more considered, sustainable and ethical garments that speak of longevity and quality. The project will investigate the enduring appeal of quality, bespoke garment production and consumption that slows down the pace of disposability and offers more enduring ways of doing fashion.

(viii) second hand and alternative consumption (car boot sales, retro shops, charity shops). See book Second Hand Cultures (Berg 2003) for more.

Past Research

Putting e-commerce in its place (ESRC)

Inconspicuous consumption in conventional city spaces (ESRC)

Regeneration in the Lace Market (Leverhulme)

Disposal and devaluation: how and why things come not to matter (ESRC)

Future Research

Beauty (aesthetic management, the body, gender, hair, cosmetic surgery)

Luxury consumption

Craft fashion, slow fashion, design craft

Sensory clothes

School of Geography

Sir Clive Granger Building
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

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