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Fancy dress costumes – museums and exhibitions can help
By investigating our past, you will find some great ideas for fancy dress costumes. International and local museums have collections and special exhibitions on show. All eras are covered, with some museums specialising in a specific area or time period. The Macclesfield silk museum specialises in local history and the local silk mills. The Star Trek Travelling Exhibition is based in the USA and focuses on all Star Trek artifacts.
Because of films like Mamma Mia and remakes of TV series, and other popular films, the nineteen seventies and nineteen eighties are currently enjoying an upsurge in popularity. 70s fancy dress costumes are the new ‘cool’, and 80s costumes gave us big hair and outfits put together from a mish mash of fabrics. It wasn’t uncommon to see silk worn with lace and wool. For some excellent ideas on fancy dress Accessories and outfits, have a look at your nearest museum or exhibition.
The Macclesfield silk museum has collections of fabrics and costumes from the eighteenth to the twentieth century, with a main focus on the nineteenth and early twentieth century. It has a collection of local photographs, fabrics, costumes and an archive of around a thousand volumes of silk patterns from local based silk manufacturers. The collection includes shawls, underwear and neckwear. They have Ladies and children’s silk crinoline dresses and an eighteen seventy bustled dress on show. The men’s collection includes silk waistcoats, ties, cravats and hats. This is a superb place to get some ideas for period fancy dress costumes.
This USA based Travelling Star Trek exhibition has a collection of authentic Star Trek costumes and artifacts. Clothing, tunics, Star Trek Uniforms and Accessories are all included. Star Trek films and TV series span over forty years, with Uniforms updated for different generations of the Star Trek crew and enemies. Clothing and accessories are well represented.
A little bit closer to home, the UK’s Manchester Gallery has a great collection of clothes. The collection here is one of the largest in Britain. It has clothing and accessories from the seventeenth century onwards. Men, women and children’s costumes are on display. A particularly interesting aspect of this collection is the Recycled Fashion. You’ll find some excellent ideas for your 70’s costume or period outfit.