|Blandford Fashion Museum|
Paid a visit to the Blandford Fashion Museum, housed in a mid 18th century house in the town of Blandford Forum, Dorset. The museum collection started life as the personal collection of the late Mrs Betty Penny. Mrs Penny used to go around the country with her collection holding catwalk fashion shows in which people wore the original garments she owned. Members of the museums community were horrified, but Mrs Penny over her lifetime raised over half a million pounds for charity by doing this. Late in her life Mrs Penny founded the museum, and in 2004 it received museum accreditation. The whole house, about 10 rooms, contains the collection, which has increased considerably since her death.
The garments are arranged sometimes by theme and sometimes by period. The collections start with the mid 18th century, in Room 2 done out as a Georgian parlour, and go up to the 1980s, Room 8 contains three Frank Usher outfits from the 1970s and 1980s. There are two rooms with exhibitions that change on a regular basis. At the moment there are two exhibitions, Blushing Brides (Room 3), and Passion for Pattern (Room 7). Blushing brides contains 19th century wedding dresses, some of which have original documentation including photographs of the dress being worn by its original owner. Passion for fashion covers the whole period of the collection, and all types of patterned garments.
|Passion for Pattern|
The Dorset craft room contains specifically local items, and as well as the ubiquitous Dorset buttons, has examples of the local glove and lacemaking crafts. There are also examples of 19th century working women’s bonnets, and men’s smocks.
The final room is a tea shop were one may purchase a reviving cream tea.
The website for further information is http://www.theblandfordfashionmuseum.com