Saturday, May 3, 2014

Inside The V&A's Wedding Dresses Exhibition

It may be entitled Wedding Dresses 1775-2014, but the Victoria & Albert's new exhibition charts so much more than just the all-important white dress.

Telling the story of the evolution of the bridal gown - from when white first became de rigueur to the increased media focus on high-profile nuptials - the exhibition is displayed across two floors, opening on the first with the oldest gowns from the late-18th century and then showcasing the last 50 years of fashion on the mezzanine level.

The chronology allows the exhibits to show how weddings have evolved - alongside many of the gowns are films or photographs of the bride who wore them and line drawings of the buildings in which the couples were married, fascinating details are peppered throughout on plaques, while there are also outfits worn by grooms, page boys and bridesmaids.

Curator Edwina Ehrman worked on the exhibition for five years, acquiring many new pieces for the museum's archive along the way and filling many of the gaps in its extensive collection of wedding fashion. In no particular order, she told us she was particularly thrilled to acquire pieces from Kate Moss and Jamie Hince, Gwen Stefani and Gavin Rossdale, Dita Von Teese, Katie Shillingford and Mary Charteris - the final of which, designed by Pam Hogg, she describes as a "really key dress, it's quite interesting to see their collaborative take on the wedding dress".
Kate Moss & Jamie Hince´s Wedding Attire
"A good wedding dress should reflect the period in which it's worn," Ehrman told us - a sentiment that allows the exhibition to explore trends of the times, whether it be the drop-waists of the Twenties, the glamour of the Thirties or the growth of more innovative and unconventional outfits.

Wedding Dresses 1775-2014 runs from May 3 until March 15 2015.

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