Making sense of dress: On sensory perspectives of wardrobe research | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 5, Issue 1
  • ISSN: 1749-3463
  • E-ISSN: 1749-3471



This article displays selected findings from a line of so-called ‘wardrobe method’ interviews conducted in the period 2010–16, in which the sensory system plays a particularly important role. The research approach of the project represents a fusion, on the one hand, of addressing the body as important within fashion and dress research and, on the other, the emphasis on user experiences and practices within the area of design research that also highlight sensory, utilitarian and symbolic aspects. Synthesizing the two research areas in the interview technique of clustering, the author shows how she has engaged with sensory perspectives of dressing in her field work, as well as in her analysis. As such, the overall departure for the article is the idea that user- and practice-oriented approaches from within design research are particularly well fitted to enrich the understanding of the way in which dress culture is not only something that has to do with visual display, but very much so with sensory experience as a tool for sense-making.

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