Passion for Fashion – The Walker

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A Passion for Fashion‘ – Mrs Tinne’s Wardrobe – A Liverpool Lady’s Clothes 1900 – 1940.
The Walker Art Gallery April 29th – July 30th 2006

If you had asked me yesterday what a Jabot was I might have guessed it was a type of pizza or something. Such is my ignorance of fashion, as anyone who has met me will testify. But now I know its something ladies used to wear at the neck (maybe some still do).

Apart from not being passionate about fashion myself the other problem I have here is that I thought I’d taken a wrong turning and ended up in the museum. It just looks like a museum show rather than an art show. But, of course, fashion is an art, kids go to art colleges to study it and I’m sure plenty will be here over the coming weeks to see what is probably the largest collection of one persons period clothes in the UK.

From a historical and sociological view its really quite interesting. There are over 700 items in the collection and about 130 on show here and they were pretty much all bought or made in Liverpool when Bold St was the ‘Bond St of the North’ and GH Lee’s was so exclusive because the items were actually made in the workshops on the top floor. Bon Marche (Church St.), Lewis’s and Owen Owens were also favourites of Mrs Tinne. Also smaller places such as Cripps in Bold St., De Moysey in Ranelagh St , Madame Val Smith in Church St. and shoes from J. Collinson in Bold St.

There’s every kind of fur coat on show, an array of day wear, evening wear, coats, swimwear (even a two-piece woollen bathing suit), shoes, hats and accessories.

Babies’ and children’s clothes from the inter-War period, including the family’s embroidered christening gown. Emily’s eldest child, Elspeth, was born in 1911 and her youngest, Philip, in 1929 and she kept many examples of all six children’s clothes, some of which are featured here.

Lucky there were no credit cards then, she was a bit of a shop-aholic at a time when Liverpool was a wealthy, fashionable city. Yes, even before the Met Qtr arrived! I like the old pictures of the family and their house ‘Clayton Lodge’ in Aigburth and the old shops.

I have to go now, there’s a Placket that needs Faggotting.