The Historical Fashion Collection at Houston Community College consists of approximately 5000 items including garments, shoes, hats, bags, and other apparel accessories. Approximately 4000 of these items are in the Elizabeth S. Brown Collection, a donation to HCC from this legendary New Jersey collector. The collection dates from the 18th century to the 21st century and includes everything from international pieces such as wedding kimonos, to a man's 18th century waistcoat to a couture four-leaf clover dress by American fashion designer Charles James.
Several pieces of special interest to Texas include a Mardi Gras costume from Galveston, a Fiesta costume from San Antonio, and an urban cowgirl rodeo ensemble worn at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.
The collection is used as a teaching tool for Fashion Design and Merchandising students at HCC and pieces from the collection are featured in rotating exhibits in the Fashion Gallery at 3601 Fannin Street, the home of the Fashion Department on HCC's Central Campus.