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Kinky Boots

This article is written by Joanne Pilcher, a volunteer on the Shoes: Pleasure and Pain exhibition and student on the V&A/RCA History of Design course. In my role as a volunteer for the Shoes: Pleasure and Pain exhibition I have been going through the acquisition files for all of the shoes and other objects that will appear […]

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Honiton lace veil, 1865 © V&A Collection

A Romantic Frame of Mind

As well as placing the bride in a slight state of mystery for her groom as the ceremony commences, a wedding veil flatters and frames the woman’s face. As in all aspects of wedding wear tradition, a veil must balance style with symbolism. As the ideal of a well to do young bride in white […]

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Postcard Teas, London. Courtesy of Postcard Teas

1660 LONDON Tea Cup Connoisseur Set: Visit to Postcard Teas

Early in December, Jana and I went on a curatorial research trip to Postcard Teas, on Dering Street in London’s Mayfair district. It was a cold, drizzly afternoon and the shop became the perfect oasis away from the noisy crowds and ceaseless hustle of nearby Oxford Street. It occupies a small space and has a […]

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The Guerrilla Girls: Fierce and Funny Feminists

Isabel Hardingham is a part-time Gallery Assistant at the V&A, a role that she combines with being Senior Bookshop Associate at the Architectural Association Bookshop. Working inside the Disobedient Objects exhibition, she reflects on the impact that the Guerrilla Girls made on her as an art history student and on the ongoing relevance of their […]

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Debenhan & Freebody wedding dress, 1926 © V&A Collection

Hitting the Sales

As January now seems forever associated with the sales, this month’s post will explore the history of purchasing wedding dresses from the late eighteenth century to the present day. An 18th century bride would be expected to marry prepared with a trousseau appropriate for her new life as a wife. Depending on her familial circumstances […]

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Inspired to Make: Angry Birds

As the last days of 2014 fly away, the Fabric of India team is working hard to be ready for what will surely be a very busy year. We’re packing in as much as we can before 2015 arrives – mocking up displays, measuring extra fabric, and formatting our labels. As we go, we are – […]

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Metal minaudière decorated in faux pearls, 1956

A Boxing Day Wedding

We all need a little glitter come the festive season, and brides are no exception to this rule. As previously explored, winter weddings – preferably made white with snow – offer the opportunity for velvet dresses and fur stoles. The dark days also mean such ceremonies are lit by further candles and lights than their […]

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Chasuble, 1670-95, V&A: 743-1870
The Rosalinde and Arthur Gilbert Collection on loan to the Victoria and Albert Museum, London

What is Luxury?

‘What is Luxury?’ is the final exhibition in a triennial series organised in collaboration with the Crafts Council. It follows from the successful ‘Power of Making’ in 2011. This exhibition is not focused on luxury consumption. Given that the V&A is located in one of the most consolidated areas of luxury consumption from food to […]

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Epic Object Disintegration, and Other Tales from the Registered Files

“Director – It is my duty to report the breakage of a Glass Huqa-bowl on loan from the Victoria and Albert Museum for the Royal Academy Exhibition of Indian Art.” So begins a letter dated November 21st 1947, explaining a tragic accident that took place while an object was being prepared for exhibition. “At the […]

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Suit worn by Christopher Breward for his Civil Partnership ceremony, 2006 © V&A Collection

Friends of the Couple

While we are honoured to have the wedding dresses of celebrities on display, we were equally touched to be loaned and trusted with pieces worn by those who are, perhaps, less well known but no less significant. While curating the exhibition, an emphasis was placed on representing lots of different kinds of brides and weddings […]

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