About SPARC Digital

SPARC Digital is a platform created by the FIT Library's Special Collections and College Archives to showcase the rare and unique materials from our collections that have been digitized. Our goal is to make our collections more widely available online to the FIT community and the general public.

The Collection

Jump to: Color Search / Rights and Permissions


SPARC Digital features images from dozens of collections in the form of original fashion sketches, photographs, illustrations, and historic fashion plates. These collections contain many fine examples of women's wear, menswear, children's wear, millinery, footwear, jewelry, and costume created between the 18th and 20th century. Significant collections include:

Bergdorf Goodman Archives
Four hundred selected sketches from the Bergdorf Goodman Archives that represent the variety of garments that were available for customers to order through Bergdorf's Custom Salon from 1950 to 1969.
Frances Neady Collection of Original Fashion Illustrations
Selected images from the Frances Neady Collection of Original Fashion Illustrations that feature illustrations by prominent 20th century artists such as Lepape, Bérard, Eric, Bouché, Antonio, Kenneth Paul Block and Mats. This collection was established in 1984 in honor of Frances Neady, an inspirational fashion illustration teacher who served on the faculties of Parsons School of Design and FIT.
Halston Hats Sketches
Selected images of Halston's hat sketches from his days as a millinery designer for Bergdorf Goodman and from his own studio.
Jerry Miller Shoe Designs
Three hundred selected sketches of shoe designs, mostly from the 1950s, created for the footwear companies of Jerry Miller.
Joseph Love Children's Wear Sketches
Selected sketches from FIT's Joseph Love Collection. Joseph Love Inc. was one of the largest manufacturers of children's wear in the United States. Sketches span the first half of the 20th century.
Helena Rubinstein Foundation Photographs
Selected images from the collection of photographs from Helena Rubinstein Foundation (1953-2011). Dated from 1896 to 1965, the photographs include portraits, travel and event photos, documenting the laboratories, salons, apartments, and modern art collections of Helena Rubinstein (1980-1965).
Fashion Plates: 150 Years of Style
Images reproduced in Fashion Plates: 150 Years of Style, written by April Calahan, edited by Karen Trivette Cannell (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2015).
Color Bar

One of the features we were most excited to implement with SPARC Digital is the ability to search and browse the collection by color. Users will find this feature especially conducive for exploring a collection centered on fashion.

There are several ways for to use this feature. First, when you open an image on SPARC Digital, you will see up to five swatches of color under the image. If you click on any of these swatches, you will bring up all of the images in our collection that also contain this color. Second, when you browse the collection by clicking on Images in the site menu, you will see a row of colors representing basic color families. If you select any of these colors, you will bring up all the images that belong to that general color family. Finally, if you search our site by keywordtry "shoes"—you will see a list of facets to narrow your search alongside the results. There is a facet for both specific colors and color family. If you select the color family "yellow," you will receive results for several images of yellow shoes.

Read More About How Color Search Works

Rights and Permissions

Image Rights and Permissions

The Special Collections and College Archives (SPARC) of the FIT Gladys Marcus Library does not own copyrights for all material held in its physical custody. It is the researcher's obligation to satisfy copyright law when copying or using materials (including digital materials) found in or made available from the unit. If you would like more information about reusing material, please contact us.

Where possible, SPARC has reviewed material in SPARC Digital and included a rights statement in the metadata associated with each item. This rights statement indicates whether a researcher may or may not reuse an item and the permission needed to do so.

In the case where items have been identified as being in the public domain, SPARC has determined that there is no known copyright restricting its use in the United States. Researchers do not need SPARC's permission to reuse these items. However, these works may be subject to other restrictions due to rights of privacy, or publicity, and they may also be subject to laws when used outside of the United States. Again, it is the researcher's responsibility to determine and satisfy all copyright laws when copying or using the materials. Works generally enter into the public domain in the United States if they were originally published before 1923, or, in the case of unpublished works, after the creator has been deceased for 70 years. If you would like more information on public domain determination the United States, please consult this chart provided by the Copyright Information Center at Cornell University.

If you feel any material on SPARC Digital violates copyright law, then please notify us immediately. Our intention is purely educational, but we will promptly remove any material determined to be in violation.