Wednesday, 9 December 2015


Fashion can either be underrated or overrated. My judgment toggles between the two extremes depending on the value I place on a fashion piece, collection or concept, but I generally tend to overrate to justify the guilt behind the purchase and the price tag that comes with it. One thing's for sure, I'm never irreverent.

The Age of Fashion Revolution. The likes of Mary Quant, André Courrèges, and Emilio Pucci produced luxury ready-to-wear clothes and accessories for the younger market, and produced traditional couture techniques.

I did some window shopping at the Victoria and Albert Museum the other week, but as there was no intention to shop as nothing was for sale, and even if there was I'm skint anyway, I'd rather call it fashiongazing.  It was delightful to have a viewing --for free-- and  not to be prohibited from taking photos. 

I usually go the logical way, presenting everything in chronological fashion, but I thought I'll take you around the exhibit the way I woke up that morning: all over the place.

So here are my favourites.

Hand-painted paper and wood advertising fan, France, c. 1950-55. Tulle and satin Roger Vivier shoe, Paris, 1954.

VOGUE, Great Britain, November 1954

Mirror mirror on the wall, who's taking photos of them all?

'Zemire' evening ensemble (jacket, skirt, bodice, and under-petticoat) by Christian Dior, Autumn-Winter 1954. This was called the 'New Look', launched on 12 February 1947. This new silhouette is based on its distinctive hour-glass shape. 

VOGUE, September 1949

VOGUE, March 1949

BRIGHT YOUNG THINGS, 1920 - 1930. Dominated by the garçonne look: simple, straight, and waistless. Fabrics are lightweight, worn with strings of beads made of plastic. You will see fringed shawls, Chinese-style embroidered dresses, and fur-trimmed evening coats. 

I'd say this is my all-time favourite dress style and cut. Even the colour is timeless. It's quite a struggle though to let the fabric hang loose around my ample hips.

Printed crepe-de-Chine dress by Mainbocher, c. 1935

Crocodile clutch with silver hardware by Hermès, c. 1931

Sequinned net evening trousers; silk chiffon with lace and mother-of-pearl blouse, both by Coco Chanel, c. 1937 - 38. Donated by Diana Vreeland, who is dubbed as The Empress of Fashion.

Evening dress made of silk chiffon and gilded kid leather by Jeanne Lanvin, c. 1936

Gilded leather shoes by Jack Jacobus Ltd., Great Britain, c. 1930. Worn and given by H.M. Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother

Choker made of silk and velvet ribbons with gilt pine cones by Elsa Schiaparelli, from 'The Pagan' collection, c. 1938

A printed silk dress designed by Jean Cocteau for Charles James Couture, probably made in Paris, c. 1938

Love this!

A quirky hand belt clasp by Victor Linton for Charles James, c. 1935

Bracelet with gold, pavé set with turquoises and brilliant-cut diamonds, c. 1860

I'm quite an avid fan of fans, so these two didn't escape my eyes. They're too dainty I wonder if they have ever been used. But then again, the upper class and socialites would have servants fanning them, so these gorgeous pieces would serve as accessories.

For more on fans, click HERE for a feature on The Fan Museum in Greenwich.

Fan made of horn sticks, gouache, and metal, made either in England or France, c. 1820 - 1830

Pierced ivory fan, made in France, c. 1820 - 1830

A group of girls in school uniform came in with their sketchbooks, and that's when I decided to head off to the Garden Cafe to sit and have a flat white. I thought I could squeeze in a visit to another museum, but it's on another side of town and a bit cumbersome to reach. Next time. I brought out my notebook and started writing notes about future posts. Hope you stay around for them. 

Thanks for visiting with me. See you around!


  1. I must put this place on my things to do list when I'm in London as I've seen a couple of posts about it and haven't yet made it there; plus points for being able to take photos too. I'm not an avid fan of fans but I do have one that I picked up in Barcelona which is very pretty and it features as decoration in my hallway - I feel a second one would make it a little more Feng Shui so I know where to come when I'm on the lookout for another one. Fashion gazing, me like it, sort of like window shopping except the torment is greater with window shopping because the fashion is actually for sale!! Hope you're having a great week xx

    1. happy holidays Colleen! Hope you manage to get that other fan for ying and yang :) xxx

  2. I always love stopping by the fashion area when I'm at the V&A. I never get tired of it and always discover something new!


    1. So true. I just love the V&A and the shop! Lovely accessories :)

  3. What am absolutely amazing museum exhibit. I would be thrilled to see all this beautiful fashion history! I always feel like I learn so much.


    1. Good to know Rebecca. Your visit to London is overdue :)

  4. that is a very interesting museum, and your photos are beautiful ... I feel as I were there with you!!

  5. I really enjoy the V&A museum every time, this looks like a great exhibit.
    I hope you're enjoying your December, and wish you a lovely Advent week. Happy Holidays! xx

    1. It's a permanent exhibit. And free! So come and visit if you ever find yourself in London one of these days. Happy holidays Madison! xx


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