Examples from each decade help document the typical looks from historic fashion eras. The clothing items primarily represent women’s apparel since 1900 and include wedding gowns, designer garments, and other fashionable attire worn in southwestern Virginia. A small reference library of historic costumes books provides further understanding of the technical, aesthetic, and social aspects of popular dress.
Dr. Oris Glisson, for whom this collection is named, joined the Virginia Tech faculty in 1948 and was Head of the Department of Clothing, Textiles, and Related Arts from 1960 until her retirement in 1978. She remains the largest single donor to the collection and her contributions serve as a legacy to her sense of style and design.
Oris Glisson donated and helped document close to 600 items of fashionable dress dating from the 1950s through the 1970s. These garments were obtained during her travels, purchased from Roanoke, Virginia dress shops, and developed as original designs. Many ensembles include coordinated hats, handbags, and shoes. These items serve as a legacy to her sense of style and design.