Bristol Saint Vintage: The Bath Fashion Museum: Laura Ashley

Thursday, 22 August 2013

The Bath Fashion Museum: Laura Ashley

On the same vein as having more fun and being more  positive, I thought id be pro-active and head out to Bath for the day to visit the Fashion Museum on the appropriately named 'Bennett Street'. The last time I was there, was my birthday a few years ago, so its always good to check out new exhibition!

They've currently got a few different exhibitions going on including -

The Laura Ashley Exhibition (ends on the 26th August)
Fifty Fabulous Frocks
Twentieth Century Evening Wear
The Dress Of The Year

The main attraction was the 60th Anniversary 'The Romantic Heroine' Laura Ashley exhibition - which is a display of over 70 L.A. dresses from her 'defining' era - the late 1960's-1970's. This period for Laura Ashley dresses meant long floral numbers, with high necks and mutton leg sleeves, taking pure inspiration from the Victorian era. Her designs gave an alternative to the 1960's optimism and instead gave a nostalgic feel. This feeling was very in tune with the mood of 1970's Britain, which by this time has experienced deaths of major public figures (the Kennedy Brothers and Martin Luther King), the Vietnam War continued and IRA bombings had spread to mainland Britain. Society was looking for escapism and they found this with the romantic Laura Ashley designs.

My two favourite pieces - The pink pinafore dress and the apricot cotton long sundress 

 I feel a small personal connection as a 1960's Laura Ashley coat was one of my first pieces of stock for Bristol Saint Vintage!

The 'Fifty Fabulous Frocks' exhibition was a clever amalgamation of modern and classic dresses - featuring designers such as Coco Chanel, Alexander Mcqueen, Erdem and Vivienne Westwood. But designer's names weren't everything, there were a few pieces without designer's names, such as the mickey mouse dress (pictured below - so pretty!)

The Twentieth Century Evening Collection was a vast rainbow of glorious evening pieces and shoes. There were sequins, furs, beads and just an amazing sense of it being a glamourous movie star's wardrobe which transcended over different eras!

The Dress of The Year was launched by Bath Fashion Museum In 1963. The 50th Dress of the year which is currently on show was designed by Dior's new head designer Raf Simons.
The dress itself is a cut of ball gown of silk with appliqued pink and blue flowers, worn with black slim trousers and court shoes.