> Blythe House: Re-Live Fashion History


Gareth Pugh, 2011

If you are sincerely interested in not just the latest fashion trend, but also the roots of it all, we break some interesting news to you today! V&A's Clothworkers Centre for Textiles, Fashion Study and Conservation is now open for visitors. Blythe House, located in South Kensington, is the 'new centre for the study, enjoyment and care' of the V&A's outstanding textile and Fashion collections.

Cotton, embroidered shoes. China, 1850-1950

The building holds more than 104,000 objects. From small Egyptian textile pieces to tapestries, originally created for medieval European palaces, any design or fashion lover might want to spend a few hours there. At the spacious new public study room, you can take a look at the textiles up close and with staff or reference books at hand, to explain them and their origin further.

Storage area at the Clothworkers' Centre

The Victoria and Albert Museums Textile Conservation Department is one of the worldwide leaders in its field. The new conservation studios, which are part of  the centre, will allow visitors to observe the actual work process while in progress, as conservation specialists handle historic items. A film about the centre is available on the V&A Channel.

Red carpet dress by Laurence Xu, China, 2011

So if you want to know more about fabrics, textiles, fashion and their evolvement over the years, you can plan a trip to Blythe House. It is FREE to visit but you need to book an appointment by e-mail. Also, public tours will take place on every last Friday of the month. If you want to dive into the history of fashion, secure your place now by sending an e-mail to: clothworkers@vam.ac.uk.

 (all photos © Victoria and Albert Museum)

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