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This hand-sewn formal man’s suit is probably made of French silk, patterned in cerise and cream. It is lined with horsehair, lined and backed with silk. Such a luxurious material would have been worn for the most formal evening occasions, such as theatre or the opera. It is fairly lightweight, which suggests the suit was intended for summer wear. By 1760 the fronts of coats are starting to curve back. The side pleats are less voluminous than they were earlier in the century. The waistcoat has shortened to mid-thigh length. The collar seen on day wear is still absent in evening dress.

Museum No. T.137 to B-1932

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Selling Silks: A Merchant's Sample Book (Hardback)

Selling Silks: A Merchant's Sample Book (Hardback)

In 1764, British Customs confiscated a book containing hundreds of silk samples of different qualities from French agents who were attempting to sell …

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Shoes: Pleasure and Pain

13 June 2015 – 31 January 2016. An exhibition looking at the extremes of footwear from around the globe. From a sandal decorated in pure gold leaf originating from ancient Egypt to the most elaborate designs by contemporary makers.

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Event - Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers: A London Celebration

Sat 05 September 2015 10:00–17:30

STUDY DAY: Celebrating the acquisition of a formal tail-suit worn by Fred Astaire and the spectacular dress worn by Ginger Rogers in the 1944 film Lady
in the Dark, and commemorating the 80th anniversary of the release of the film Top Hat.

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