Inside the Drexel Historic Costume Collection

The Drexel Historic Costume Collection, which was previously open by appointment only, has recently launched educational seminars at Drexel’s URBN Center on the University City Campus. The events will each include an in-depth presentation on a particular aspect of fashion history and a private viewing of the collection.

Housed in the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design, the collection spans more than 400 years. Its hold- ings reflect a wide range of garments and accessories — from Renaissance textiles to French couture. Many garments were worn by noted women of style including American socialite and style icon Babe Paley and Princess Grace of Monaco.

It is one of the oldest university collections in the United States and is internationally recognized for the exceptional quality of its holdings.

For more information visit

Take a tour of the costume collection with curator Clare Sauro.


Drexel’s incredible collection of more than 12,000 museum-quality garments, textiles, accessories and related materials was, until recently, one of its best-kept secrets.