Spring has well and truly sprung, and what better way to celebrate than with an exhibition that celebrates style by the sea?! Opening on 22nd May (and running until 30th August), Riviera Style at the Fashion & Textile Museum looks at fashion at its most fun from the British seaside to the Côte d’Azur and California. With swimsuits and sarongs, boat neck Bretons and beach pyjamas, palazzo pants and playsuits, bikinis and burkinis, the exhibition brings together a diverse range of clothing worn in and by the sea covering over 100 years of leisure. And if that weren’t exciting enough, the Fashion Studio at the Fashion & Textile Museum will be dedicated to Nautical Chic throughout the duration of Riviera Style! It will feature information from the book as well as a few garments hand-picked by yours truly that illustrate the timeless appeal of maritime style. See more info here, and I’ll be giving a talk on the relationship between fashion and the sea on 16th July.
Read more about the exhibition in this Telegraph piece on the development of seaside style, in which I discuss the nostalgic appeal of vintage swimwear.
NAUTICAL CHIC EVENTS…
… to get the lowdown on all things nautical, come and see me chat about the maritime history behind the clothes we love at Hoxton Hotel on 26th May at 7pm. I’ll be exploring the birth of the naval uniform in the 18th century and its appropriation into womenswear, featuring designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier and Alexander McQueen. Tickets are FREE! Get them HERE!
… and I will be talking about the sexualisation of the Victorian sailor, cross-dressing on the Music Hall stage, sailor style and the birth of a gay icon at Salon for the City: Sailortown on May 28th at 6.30pm. Also speaking will be Alex Werner of the Museum of London Docklands on London’s 19th century Sailortown. Get your tickets here!
SPEAKING OF NAUTICAL CHIC… We have gone international! It has been featured in D2 magazine (lifestyle supplement of Norway’s largest business paper Dagens Næringsliv), in Ireland’s Sunday Business Post and was also chosen as one of the best style books for spring by Canada’s national paper, the Globe and Mail. Not to mention Libby Purves gave it a glowing review in Yachting Monthly, and CNN ran a gorgeous piece on the enduring appeal of nautical design. Also thank you to the fantastic Rosalind Jana, who wrote a great review for the Thames & Hudson blog!
IN OTHER NEWS…
… on ITV’s Good Morning Britain about what to wear to work, and the idea of a ‘work uniform’ for the 21st century. You can watch it here.
Picture on the right from style.com Arabia
… about beauty as a battleground for Sali Hughes Beauty, in relation to the Fashion on the Ration exhibition at the Imperial War Museum. Read about: beauty as a national duty, wartime make up cheats and military-themed powder compacts, here.
Chanel and Preen in The Guardian; a member of Air Raid Precautions staff applies lipstick between emergency calls, c1940 © IWM
My summer series of Theatre of Fashion salons at Hackney’s Museum of Curiosities is live! Join me for the Politics of Fashion with Tansy Hoskins and the Imperial War Museum on June 16th; Shoes from Sport to Sex with the V&A’s Helen Persson and Dr Thomas Turner on July 7th and an immersive history of Curious Cosmetics with Odette Toilette and Julian Walker on September 16th. More info to follow, and join the Facebook event here.
Speaking of events, I would like to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who helped to launch Nautical Chic in style! Especially Beyond Retro, The Blues Kitchen, Thames & Hudson, Sailor Jerry and Tatty Devine; Gemma Cairney and Bones Brigade for the music, and Luka Marchant for the fabulous pictures. You can see more of Luka‘s pictures of Nautical Chic setting sail right here. It was quite the party!
Finally, if you or anyone you know is keen to brush up on fashion history, I’m teaching a short course at London College of Fashion over the summer. Fashion History: The Evolution of Style covers the key moments in fashion history and theory over 200 years, from the French Revolution through to the 1990s. And you also get a copy of my first book! It’s running from Tuesday 28th – Friday 31st July. BOOKING and info HERE.
Until next time!