We are passionate about costume and accessories, so it is no surprise that this part of the collection is one of the largest in the museum. It totals around 8,000 pieces and spans three centuries, with the earliest items dating to the 1730s. If you have a keen interest in fashion and the history of costume, you will love this stunning collection.
The collection offers a perfect representation of fashion through the centuries Although some pieces date back to the Georgian period, the main focus of the collection is the Victorian era and 20th century ladies’ fashion. We cover most time frames within this period, and it is evident throughout the collection how much fashion has evolved over the years.
We have clothes and accessories from men, women and children that have been lovingly created for a wide range of occasions. We are particularly proud of the collection of Victorian and Edwardian ladies’ fashion. This includes some beautifully detailed evening dresses as well as a number of day dresses and accessories.
The collection of stunning beaded dresses from the 1920s form another special part of the collection. These dresses were made with astonishing attention to detail and were worn by fashionable young women known as ‘flappers’. When women got the vote in 1918, the new freedoms felt by many women reflected in fashion. Flappers dressed in favour of a more straightened silhouette, revealing more of the arms and legs.
The collection goes on to chart the many changes seen in fashion throughout the 20th century, from swing dresses to shoulder pads, from miniskirts to flares, the collection at Preston Park Museum reflects it all!