Club to Catwalk (2013)

Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s explored the creative explosion of London fashion in the 1980s. Through more than 85 outfits, the exhibition showcased the bold and exciting new looks by the most experimental young designers of the decade, including Betty Jackson, Katharine Hamnett, Wendy Dagworthy and John Galliano.

The exhibition traced the emerging theatricality in British fashion as the capital’s vibrant and eclectic club scene influenced a new generation of designers. Also celebrating iconic styles such as New Romantic and High Camp, and featuring outfits worn by Adam Ant and Leigh Bowery, the exhibition explored how the creative relationship between catwalk and club wear helped reinvent fashion, as reflected in magazines such as i-D and Blitz and venues including Heaven and Taboo.

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The House of Beauty and Culture: Elegy and Escapism in East London in the 1980s

The House of Beauty and Culture by Marcel Door in The New Spirit in Craft and Design by The Crafts Council 1987

Elegy and Escapism in East London in the 1980s
Guest post by Kasia Maciejowska.
The House of Beauty and Culture (HOBAC) was a craft collective at the heart of the London club scene in the late 1980s. They mixed outré camp details with rough industrial textures to pioneer an urban dress code that was taken up by the fashion world in the following decade.

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Costume mounter installing a mannequin

It’s been another busy week of installing our Club to Catwalk exhibition in our Fashion Gallery. This week we have been focussing on our club styles which will be on open display on the mezzanine level of the gallery. © Kate Bethune Here you will be confronted with examples of the many different styles and […]

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Workman installing Club to Catwalk sign

It hardly seems possible, but after months of object selections, project team meetings and discussions with designers, we have started to install our latest fashion exhibition: Club to Catwalk London Fashion in the 1980s! This week we are focussing on our catwalk cases which address themes such as eveningwear, tailoring, knitwear and the BLITZ designer […]

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Denim jacket 'BLITZ' by Levi Strauss & Co

It’s been 27 years since the V&A last displayed the BLITZ designer collection of Levis denim jackets. These unique jackets were commissioned by the 80s style magazine in 1986 and customised by a host of top designers, including John Galliano, Vivienne Westwood, Bernstock Speirs and Paul Smith. A quirky twist on the classic Levis denim […]

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Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s, 10 July 2013 – 16 February 2014

This summer the V&A will host its first exhibition devoted to 1980s London fashion, ‘Club to Catwalk: London Fashion in the 1980s‘. When I was first asked if I would like to be the assistant curator on the project, I obviously jumped at the opportunity, although I confess I too conjured up images in my […]

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