It’s all about flowers just now after hitting this exhibition all about Liberty at the Fashion and Textile Museum as well as Painting the Modern Garden at the Royal Academy. I’ll share more about the RA’s show soon, but first I want to tell you all about this wonderful exhibition and this wonderful space in Bermondsey. If you are in to fashion and textiles, and you haven’t yet discovered this gem I strongly suggest you hotfoot it down to the Fashion and Textiles Museum ASAP!
If you read my review of Anna Buruma’s book about Liberty London you’ll already be very much in the mood for taking a trip down Liberty’s memory lane. This exhibition not only takes you through some of Liberty’s biggest fashion moments, it also charts some of the history of how this amazing retailer developed it’s very particular design style and how that fitted in to the fashion world as a whole. It’s no secret that we adore Liberty London, and this exhibition affirmed that love even further.
The exhibition looks at how Liberty textiles were included in craft revivals, like this stunningly smocked child’s outfit from the Seventies, as well as tracing it’s history through all of the fashion decades pretty much since Liberty’s first day of trading out of that iconic store. There is so much to be inspired by here, taking you through all of the key silhouettes from each fashion period as well as showing how Liberty and their fabulous florals dovetail in to each era. Those floral designs are really central to spotlighting the evolution of what we identify as Liberty’s DNA today. Such creativity and also a surprising amount of diversity- but all really identifiably Liberty.
There are even contemporary looks too, showing how international designer names have incorporated Liberty into their own looks, and there’s some new prints fresh from the Liberty design team too.
The final section in the exhibition is a separate room dedicated to ‘The Art of Pattern’ and the work of Susan Collier and Sarah Campbell. These sisters were instrumental in taking the Liberty aesthetic forward during the 60’s and 70’s, creating many of the most recognisable Liberty patterns. We’ll share some more with you in a post tomorrow so keep an eye out for it.
Tags: Arthur Liberty, Fashion and Textiles Museum, fashion exhibition, Liberty Art Fabric, Liberty florals, Liberty in Fashion, Liberty London, Sarah Campbell, Susan Collier, vintage fashion, Vivienne Westwood