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Linda Welters

  • Professor
  • Textiles, Fashion Merchandising and Design; Quinn Hall, Rm 309C
  • Phone: 401.874.4525
  • Email: lwelters@uri.edu
  • Office Location: Quinn Hall
    55 Lower College Road
    Kingston, RI, 02881


Linda Welters began her university teaching career at the University of Wyoming. She joined URI as a permanent faculty member after receiving her PhD. She served as department chair for many years. During her tenure at URI, she has served as editor of Dress, the scholarly journal of the Costume Society of America, and as editor of the series Textiles that Changed the World (Bloomsbury). She has received numerous awards for her scholarship including the Distinguished Scholar award from the International Textile and Apparel Association in 2002 and the URI Foundation Scholarly Excellence Award in 2005.

Linda teaches history of fashion, history of furniture, and the senior seminar at the undergraduate level; at the graduate level she teaches courses in research methods and material culture. She is also Director of the Graduate Program.


Welters’ area of specialization is the cultural history of fashion, folk dress, and Rhode Island quilts. Her teaching and research is grounded in the study of artifacts, and she employs a material culture approach in her work. This ties in with the TMD Department’s Historic Textile and Costume Collection. Currently, she is exploring the application of the principles of fashion to the history of dress in non-Western cultures for a book to be co-authored with Abby Lillethun for Bloomsbury.  Welters is also currently co-authoring with Trish Cunningham a book titled Fashioning America for Texas Tech University Press in the CSA Series.


  • Ph.D.,  Design, University of Minnesota, 1981
  • M.A., Textiles and Clothing, Colorado State University, 1973
  • B.A., Textiles and Clothing in Business, College of St. Catherine (St. Paul, Minnesota), 1971




Welters, Linda and Abby Lillethun, eds. A Fashion Reader. Second Edition, Oxford: Berg, 2011. [First edition 2007]

Welters, Linda and Patricia Cunningham, eds. Twentieth-Century American Fashion. Oxford, UK: Berg Publishers, 2005.

Welters, Linda and Margaret Ordoñez, eds. Down by the Old Mill Stream: Quilts in Rhode Island. Kent, Ohio: Kent State University Press, 2000.


Welters, Linda and Margaret Ordoñez. “Historic Textile and Costume Collections in the Academic Setting.” Monograph #10, International Textile and Apparel Association, 2011 (online)

Articles and Chapters in Books

Welters, Linda. “Alatzas: Handwoven Fabrics During the Early Industrial Period in Greece (1880-1920).” Dress Vol. 39, No. 1 (2013): 59-77.

Lillethun, Abby, Linda Welters, and Joanne B. Eicher. “(Re) Defining Fashion.” Dress Vol. 38 (2012): 75-97.

Welters, Linda and Sara Marcketti. “History of the Textiles and Apparel Discipline.” Envisioning Textile and Apparel Research and Education for the 21st Century: Envisioning the Future. ITAA Monograph, 2015 (online).

Welters, Linda and Hannel, Susan. “Careers in Fashion Design.” In Fashion Design for the Curious: Why Study Fashion Design edited by Kishor Vaidya. Amazon Digital Services, Inc.: The Curious Academic Publishing, Kindle Book, 2015 (online).

Welters, Linda. “The Fashion of Sustainability.” In Sustainable Fashion, What’s Next? A Conversation about Issues, Practices and Possibilities. Second edition. ed. by Janet Hethorn and Connie Ulasewicz London and New York: Bloomsbury, 2015: 4-26.

Welters, Linda. “Peasant Blouse” In Ethnic Clothing in the United States: A Cultural Encyclopedia, ed. by Annette Lynch and Mitchell D. Strauss. Lanham, Maryland: Rowman & Littlefield, 2015: 229-31

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