Monday 23 July 2012

Ballgown exhibition at the V&A in London

I had a great weekend in London filled with shopping (obviously) and visiting art galleries and museums. I was particularly impressed with the Ballgown exhibition at the V&A gallery. The exhibition takes you through British glamour and fashion since 1950 with a stunning collection of ballgowns and evening dresses that have dazzled the red carpet. The exhibition included a selection of royal ballgowns, including a dress designed for the Queen Mother and Princess Diana's 'Elvis Dress' (see picture below) that was designed by Catherine Walker. 

State evening ensemble 'Elvis Dress' for Princess Diana by Catherine Walker, 1989. Museum no. T.1-2006. Given by the Franklin Mint

I spent a good few hours in the exhibition and looked carefully at the designs and hard work that had gone into creating these beautiful ballgowns. It was great to see how fashion has changed dramatically from the early 1950's to the present day, and also how fashion today still incorporates styles from the 1960's and 1980's. I was impressed to see ballgowns designed by contemporary designers within the exhibition, such as Vivienne Westwood and Alexander McQueen. There was a particular white ballgown designed by Vivienne Westwood in 1994 that caught my eye, with the iconic Vivienne Westwood symbol embedded within the corset (see picture below).

Satin and flocked tulle gown by Vivienne Westwood. Created for Lay Bianca Job-Tyoran to wear to Queen Charlotte's Ball, 1994. Museum no. T14-1997

I really enjoyed the exhibition and would highly recommend it to anyone interested in British fashion, or even if you just want to look at pretty dresses for an afternoon! The exhibition runs until January 2013 so there's plenty of time for a trip to London. 

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