ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Must See Fashion Exhibitions in 2017

Balenciaga: Shaping fashion

Where: The Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK

When: May 27, 2017 to February 18, 2018

This exhibition showcases the work and legacy of Crisóbal Balenciaga, the influential Spanish couture designer, and includes over 100 of his pieces, as well as examining and featuring the work of his protégée designers and designers who have taken inspiration from and work in the same couture tradition.


Mary Quant: Fashion Icon

Where: Gallery of Costume, Manchester, UK

When: November 3, 2016 to November 5, 2017

For anyone interested in 1960’s fashion, this exhibition which displays the work of Mary Quant, is a must visit. As a designer who was at the forefront of the ‘fashion renaissance’ of the 1960s, Quant’s designs epitomised the period, being worn by the likes of 60’s icons such as Twiggy. Displayed are Quant’s most iconic designs from the 1950’s to the 1970’s and in particular the exhibition explores and showcases her unique use of modern materials such as PVC, plastics and synthetics as well as patterns and accessories which appealed widely to the young and style-conscious of the 1960s.

November 1965:  Chelsea fashion designer and make-up manufacturer Mary Quant.  (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
(Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)


Diana: Her Fashion Story

Where: Kensington Palace, London, UK

When: March 1, 2017 to February 28, 2018

A special exhibition which commemorates and traces the evolution and continued influence of the fashion of Princess Diana. The collection includes some of Princess Diana’s favourite and most iconic pieces, including evening gowns worn at royal occasions she attended. In particular the iconic velvet gown, famously worn at the White House when the Princess danced with John Travolta. The exhibition also explores the relationship between Princess Diana and some of her favourite designers.


Lace in Fashion

Where: Fashion Museum, Somerset, UK

When: February 4, 2017 to January 1, 2018

This exhibition explores the history from the 16th Century onwards and features over 40 designs from the past 430 years. Highlights in the collection include a navy blue dress worn by Lea Seydoux in the James Bond film Spectre, and a range of garments from designers such as Balmain, Balenciaga and Molyneux.

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House Style: Five Centuries of Fashion at Chatsworth House

Where: Chatsworth House, Bakewell, UK

When: March 25, 2017 to October 22, 2017

Documenting some of its most famous and fashionable residents, this exhibition showcases the trail of designer outfits left behind by the likes of Elizabethan courtier Bess of Hardwick, as well as the 18th century trendsetter Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire. Clothes worn by model and designer Stella Tennant, as well as Kathleen Kennedy, sister of John. F. Kennedy, and dresses worn by Fred Astaire’s dance partner Adele Astaire all also feature. The exhibition will bring to life the stories and lives of these and many other women from the last 500 years through an exploration of their clothing and accessories.


The World of Anna Sui

Where: Fashion and Textile Museum,  London, UK

When: May 26, 2017 to October 1, 2017

Featuring works by iconic American designer, Anna Sui, this exhibition charts Sui’s influence in pop culture fashion and in stylising the mod, punk and rock and roll scenes. The exhibition has particular significance in marking the first time in the UK that an American designer has been the focus of a retrospective exhibition, which charts her progression through over 100 items which span from her first catwalk show in 1991 onwards.


Disobedient Bodies

Where: The Hepworth Wakefield, Yorkshire, UK

When: March 18, 2017 to June 18, 2017

Contemporary modern art meets designer fashion in this exhibit which celebrates and presents the human form in fashion. The previously bare stone statues of the gallery, by sculptures such as Louise Bourgeois, Lynn Chadwick, Naum Gabo, Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moor are shown clothed for the first time in designer garments, from Christian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier, Rei Kawakubo of Commes des Garçons, Helmut Lang and Issey Miyake.

Inside the Opening of J.W. Anderson's 'Disobedient Bodies' Exhibit


A History of Fashion in 100 Objects

Where: Fashion Museum, Somerset, UK

When: March 19, 2016 to January 1, 2019

A collection of 100 objects which date from the 1500s are brought together to celebrate and examine the progression of 500 years of fashion history. The exhibition presents the museums favourite garments, shoes, jewellery and accessories which the curators depict as having defined eras, set trends and shaped the way the British public have dressed.


Lucy Young

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