On Saturday Chloe, her boyfriend Ben, and I visited the Fashion Museum in Bath as a pre-birthday treat.
I hadn’t been since I was a child but it was just as good as I remembered. As you walk into the elegant Georgian setting of the Assembly Rooms you can just imagine what it would’ve been like when it was the heart of distinguished society and frequented by the likes of Jane Austen and Charles Dickens.
The Fashion Museum is in the basement of the Assembly Rooms and showcases an impressive collection of pieces from the 1600’s to the present day. The current exhibition ‘A History of Fashion in 100 Objects’, which only opened a couple of weeks ago, takes a look at social and cultural history using key pieces from their collection.
Starting with the late 16th Century, you are taken on a journey through time up until the modern day. The exhibition highlights pivotal moments in fashion, telling the personal stories behind each garment to form an idea of what it was like to live during that period. I particularly enjoyed seeing the refined silk gowns from Bath’s Georgian heyday and the Regency fashions that are synonymous with Jane Austen’s novels. I would love to be able to go back in time and meet the people who wore them.
The exhibition is split into two halves with the opportunity to try on costumes in the middle and we obviously couldn’t resist! The dresses Chloe and I tried on were so heavy and that was without the corset and petticoats etc. – I’m not sure how women wore them all day, especially when they had such petite frames.
The 1940’s – 60’s sections contained the outfits I’d most like to wear myself. I fell in love with a black wool suit called ‘Daisy’ from New Look in 1947 designed by Christian Dior and worn by Margot Fonteyn. Pieces towards the end of the exhibition demonstrate the more extreme trends from recent decades and perhaps don’t represent popular fashions during those times but provide a fascinating insight into modern culture nevertheless.
I’d definitely recommend going to see ‘A History of Fashion in 100 Objects’ if you’re interested in fashion, history, or not at all. It’s well worth visiting even if you don’t have a particular interest in fashion as we all wear clothes and are influenced by changing trends, whether consciously or not.
The exhibition runs until 1st January 2018 so you have plenty of time to go and see it!