Tuesday, 26 April 2016

London visit

Last week I took off and went to London for a few days. I felt that I needed a bit of holidays before work gets really busy in May-June. London is a paradise if you love clothes, fabric and costume and I took my chances to do some exploration, I still have a lot of things that I need to see though...

First on my list was to go to the Victoria and Albert museum and their new exhibition Undressed: A brief history of underwear. It was pure heaven. I actually got goosebumps when I saw that this was the first item in the exhibition.

(the photos aren't mine since it was strictly forbidden to take photos or do sketches). This is my favorite pair of 18th Century stays, and it was so Beautiful. It really looked tiny. I also liked that it's clearly visible that even if the stitches in the boning channels are small, they are not extremely tiny and they are a bit uneven. Makes my confidence in my own handsewing grow.

This was probably my second favourite item, even if I'm not big on hoop skirts. It was new to me that the steel bands are wavy, and not round, all to make the fabric of the skirt fall more gracefully.

In all I spent almost two hours there. The shop also had a lot of interesting things but I only bought a tote bag with a corset on. They have released a new book in the V&A Fashion in Detail series, and this time it's only underwear, so I think that one will go onto my wish list.

After V&A I met up with a friend and as two good Star Wars fans we took the Jubilee line to Canary Wharf. Whe the trailer to the new Star Wars film Rogue One was released, a few weeks ago, it was quickly identified that a scene in the trailer had been shot at that tube station.

Here I am waiting for the next train to the Death Star.
The next day I spent at the Camden Markets and Portobello Road. The Camden markets were a bit of a disappointment, but if you are into steampunk/goth/Lolita-inspired clothing you can find a lot there. Just when I was leaving I stumbled upon a little shop with 50's style dresses, in all sizes, and I just had to buy this really cute dress.

Portobello Road is most busy in the weekends, but I did pick up a nice pearl necklace that will work fine when I want just a plain necklace with my 18th century outfits. It was cheap, so I doubt it's real pearls, but it looked a lot better than the kind of fake pearl necklaces you can buy in standard accessories stores.

The next day I met up with another friend and we had a total girls' day out in central London. Talking a lot about Star Wars, buying hats and she showed me Berwick street. This is a street with just fabric shops, with gorgeous fabrics. Pricey, but still gorgeous. I think the most expensive fabric I saw was £150/meter, and most of them were in the £25-55 price range. I blew my budget on a glorious silk dupioni. I've never bought such an expensive fabric before, and I'm really going to be nervous when I cut it, but I just couldn't resist.

New hat selfie

Overall I had a great time in London, and now I'm filled with inspiration for projects.

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