|Title||House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth||Posted In||Fashion, Fashion design, Textile Design, Womenswear||Duration||25 March 2017 to 22 October 2017|
Peak District National Park, Bakewell
|Official Website||Chatsworth House|
Glamour, elegance and historical significance are all on display at House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth, an elaborate exhibition which is gracing the storied halls and gilded ballrooms of Chatsworth House, until October the 22nd, 2017. Curated by American Vogue magazine's International Editor-at-Large Hamish Bowles, under the creative direction and design by Patrick Kinmonth and Antonio Monfreda, the exhibition was first conceived six years ago when Laura Cavendish, Countess of Burlington, was searching the house's vast archives for a christening gown for her son, James. With the Duke and Duchess' of Devonshire consent, she asked Mr. Bowles to take a look and they all agreed that the magnificence of the clothing and textiles in storage was too splendid to not be put on display. Rizzoli publishing house agreed too and has published a book by the same title documenting this collaboration which is available from the Stables and Orangery shops at Chatsworth.
Located in the heart of Britain's beautiful Derbyshire Peak District National Park, Chatsworth House - one of the ten Treasure Houses of England - harkens back to a time when grandeur was an everyday occurrence, when ladies and gents dressed in couture for supper and adorned themselves with diamonds and tiaras on the weekends. And it is this lifestyle that is presented through the fashion retrospective, revealing the clothes and accoutrements of some of the inimitable "characters" that has lived and graced Chatsworth House, such as Duchess Georgiana, Duchess Deborah (one of the famed Mitford sisters), Adele Astaire, Kathleen "Kick" Kennedy and Stella Tennant (Duchess Deborah's granddaughter) among others.
The exhibition - which is sponsored by GUCCI, together with C W Sellors Fine Jewelry, Investec, Sotheby's and Wedgwood - starts in the crystal chandelier bedecked Chapel Corridor with a fashion-based timeline which spans the carpet of its gilded length featuring over a hundred fashion items and accessories, such as gold headdresses and even Duchess Georgiana's gold brooch. Meanwhile, in the decadent mural clad Painted Hall, garments such as a red velvet with ermine trim Coronation Gown from 1937, as well as Stella Tennant's Helmut Lang silk wedding dress from 1999, leave visitors in awe with their respective, incredible detailing and "wow" factors.
But perhaps the most jaw-dropping destination in the house is the improbable party taking place in the Great Dining Room. In here, enveloped by the red silk lined walls and coffered ceilings dripping with gilding and crystal chandeliers, over thirty mannequins are bedecked in a host of couture gowns created by every designer imaginable - from Chanel and Balmain, to Tom Ford and Dior. Visitors to Chatsworth House are invited to take part in the celebrations - despite their probably less-than-splendid modern touristic mode of dress - and touch upon the splendour of the grand house's history that for a brief moment coexists with the present in a way that not only inspires and enthuses but also reminds us that beauty, attention to detail and quality workmanship are never a thing of yesteryear, but a necessity in each moment.