From left, an evening dress designed by Coco Chanel, a Brooks Brothers top hat (c. 1890), and detail of a Chado Ralph Rucci ensemble in double-faced chartreuse wool/silk. (Courtesy Museum at FIT)
Among the current exhibitions at the Museum at FIT is the second installment of “Fashion, A-Z,” featuring highlights from the museum’s permanent collection of more than 50,000 garments and accessories dating from the 18th century to the present. Can’t make it to New York to examine the embroidered organza creation that Oscar de la Renta whipped up for his spring 2002 Balmain collection or showstoppers from the likes of Christian Dior and Charles James? A companion book from Taschen is due out this fall, but the real resource is already at your fingertips: the freshly relaunched Museum at FIT Online Collections. The new site is stocked with digital images and details of some 600 objects (double the number previously available), from 17th-century kicks with stylish red heels to a killer Rick Owens ensemble just a few seasons removed from the runway. The more integrated site also includes an array of options for searching and browsing the collection as well as the ability to create and save image sets for personal use. Watch for new objects and images to be added on a monthly basis.