Inside the Clothworkers' Centre: Contemporary Textiles and Fashion

A A A | Close

Video Transcript



Inside the Clothworkers’ Centre for the Study and Conservation of Textiles and Fashion – Contemporary Textile and Fashion


Oriole Cullen, Acting Senior Curator Textiles and Fashion


The V&A is very fortunate that it’s well known for its dress and textiles collections, so often we get approached by collectors and people who have items and objects that they would like to donate to the museum.


So this is one of two pieces that Giles [Deacon] very generously donated to the collections. It has this wonderful rubberised, razor-edged leopard print. The other nice detail about it is that it has these seams on the outside which are overlocked, and again it’s that irreverent sense that Giles has, taking something that looks quite fine and using techniques that you wouldn’t expect to see on the outside of a garment.


This is our contemporary menswear section and, as you can see, it’s a slightly different arrangement to the dress [section]. Because of the shape and size of the jackets and the t-shirts that you see on display, we’re able to have a double-height hanging. This section up here is devoted to t-shirts and, as you can see, there are a lot of slogan t-shirts. We also have things such as music t-shirts [for example] Megadeth and then we have t-shirts by people like Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren.


So this is a Roksanda Ilincic gown from her spring/summer 2009 collection and this was exhibited in the V&A’s ‘Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950’ exhibition [May 2012-Jan 2013]. It’s since been packed up for travelling so it has these lovely sections made up by our conservation department. The dress was donated to the collections by Roksanda and we’re delighted to be able to have a piece of her work in the archive.


The Clothworkers’ Centre is located at Blyth House in Kensington Olympia, London. Entrance is free and by appointment.


Public tours of The Clothworkers’ Centre will take place on the last Friday of every month, booking is essential.




Further reading


Giles Deacon dress -


Megadeth t-shirt -


Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren t-shirt -


Ballgowns: British Glamour Since 1950 -


Acting senior curator of Textiles and Fashion, Oriole Cullen, provides an insight into the V&A's collection at the Clothworkers' Centre, drawing our attention to some particularly special examples of men's and women's wear.

Curator Oriole Cullen draws our attention to some particularly special examples of men's and women's wear...