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Eliza Wyke / Blog

Last month I had the opportunity to visit Liverpool and see an intriguing exhibition.  In contrast to usual fashion exhibitions which have a theme or highlight a design house, this exhibition contained a snapshot of a collection from one woman's wardrobe; Mrs Emily Tinne.  Indeed the entire collection, comprising more than 700 items, is the "largest collection of one person's clothes in a British Museum" and was donated to the National Museum Liverpool by Emily's youngest daughter.   This exhibition covered 1900 to 1940 - the years in which Emily married (into...

Late last year I had the privilege to bring to life a bride’s extraordinary vision.  She presented me with a rough sketch of her design and several bags of remnant / scraps of materials, beads, braiding and chiffon flowers.  From a large mound of fabrics (my cutting table overflowed!), I created a boned bodice, circular skirt (although for that we did buy extra fabric!), and a splendid train.  The bride, an artist, had amassed this collection of trims and fabrics over a number of years and from various trips abroad,...

Mary Quant:  Grand Dame of modern fashion has been enjoying a long overdue and well deserved exhibition of her work spanning the period 1955 to 1975 at London's V&A Museum.  This exhibition highlights how she revolutionised fashion in the 1960s.  Designing easy to wear, practical clothes, for the modern, and ever increasing numbers of, working women.  Her deigns moved away from the formality of the couture-bound 1950s, where daughters would follow their mother's to her dressmaker (and look like a mini-version of them), into a new sphere of fast fashion. ...

With out of town visitors to entertain last week, we ventured into the Royal Pump Room Museum, and their delightful display of wedding dresses spanning 150 years.  The majority of the dresses have a local connection; either designed and made locally and/or worn by locals.  The small exhibition charts the changes in fashions, style and body shape, and also the economics surrounding weddings. Having seen the V&A's 300 years of bridal fashions a couple or so years ago and it's grand array of (mostly designer) wedding dresses made for the rich,...

Last week during a trip to Milan, I had the good fortune to find time to visit the Armani / Silos permanent exhibition.  The exhibition opened in 2015 to mark the 40th anniversary of Mr Armani’s designs.  Two floors of permanent exhibiting space house the designer’s creations over the 40-year period, curated into three themes:  Androgynous, Ethnicities and Stars.  The first floor explores the themes of Androgyny.  In which he identifies the jacket as an everyday must-have item, which indeed it is, and this space pairs menswear and womenswear together. ...

A sneaky trip to London last Saturday involved a visit to the Design Museum to observe the stunning exhibition of the late Azzedine Alaia’s work. This was my first visit to the newly housed Design Museum, now located on Kensington High Street, and have to say the building and exhibition areas are both impressive.  A wide, uncluttered space displayed these powerful creations to perfection. The exhibits were grouped by concept rather than collection, with many ideas and themes being revisited, honed and perfected throughout his career.  Unlike many designers today restarting their...

Staying stylish during a heatwave can be problematic.  Here in Blightly we're simply not used to the temperatures.  For most of us, if we're fortunate, a week in the sun each year means shorts and vest tops, worn year after year, and which simply aren't suitable for working life at home.  Whilst I'm fortunate enough to work for myself, meaning that jeans make up the cornerstone of my wardrobe, sometimes even I concede they have to take a back seat.  This prolonged heatwave being a case in point; it's simply...

Last week I had the absolute pleasure of attending the brand spanking new Dior Designer of Dreams exhibition at the Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris – a pleasure for me, as normally when I’m scheduled to visit a city the exhibition of choice has either just closed, or about to open the day after I’ve left!  That the Dior exhibition opened the week before, and thanks to my Twitter feed (thank you social media), I was able to spend a pleasurable hour or several viewing one of my design...