Monday, 10 May 2010

Did the Bunny escape?

Today I was shocked to see newly relaunched X factor reject Diana Vickers wearing this Peter Jenson masterpiece on a recent promotional tour.  Kudos to her stylist, but you can pay a mere £4 to see exactly the same piece in the slightly more whimsical setting of the Drawing Room in Linley Sambourne House.  

We have a specialist fashion afternoon coming up this Friday, the 14th, between 3 and 5pm, please drop in and meet the FHT collective who will be more than happy to enlighten you about this dress, as well as a plethora of other pieces from Alexander McQueen, Marios Schwab, Mary Kantrantzou and Stephen Jones amongst others.  See you there!


Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Where Have You Been?

A little quiet on the blog front of recent, but definitely not without good reason!
After months of our hard graft we are incredibly proud to say that Fashionably curious is finally up and running and very much open to the public.

You can read our first reviews from Acne and Fashion 156 here and here (thanks guys, you are too kind!)

Check the side bar on the right for all opening times and visiting information.

A massive huge thank you to absolutely everyone who helped us out. It couldn't have been done if it wasn't  for all your hard work and support.

We hope to see you there!

Thursday, 15 April 2010

Is that you, Goofy?

With Sambourne's delicious nature after fashion series of illustrations, he morphs women into animals through what he saw as ridiculous fashionable apparel of the time.  This month Elle Espana takes a leaf out of Linley's book, then reverses it, to morph some of today's most recognisable designers into a few of the most well loved Disney characters.  With all the talk of minimal dressing and a palette of nudes coming our way for the next six months, it comes as a relief that the Disney characters have ignored the Spring/Summer rules for 2010 and just embodied a signature style instead.  Donald Duck perfectly portrays the spirit of the CSM trained Galliano, whilst Goofy is unrecognisable as the first knight of contemporary fashion, Don Lagerfeld.

Images courtesy of Coco Perez.

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

See Through

From this Zoo Magazine and most definitely not the other. Filthy!

Sunday, 11 April 2010

Long Live McLaren

With the passing of Malcolm McLaren late last week, the first thing that sprung into my mind was the SEX t-shirt he created in the mid 70s with Vivienne Westwood.  Although the Westwood-McLaren partnership was not to last, the now iconic reappropriated use of cowboy illustrations on these early tees would have been right up Linley's street.  With tongue firmly in cheek, it echoes a similar feel to Sambourne's more risque works, not to mention it cemented Westwood's now famous legacy for controversy through historical referencing. 

A thank you from the FHT collective Malcolm, for the creativity and commitment to the cause in establishing the most shocking and influential subculture this country has ever seen.  Today it is not God Save the Queen, but rather Long Live McLaren and the legacy of punk.


Friday, 9 April 2010


Diane Pernet of A Shaded View of Fashion in collaboration with Vogue Italia presents 
'Fred Butler: SunShowers' 

Fred Butler is one of the contributors to the Fashionably Curious exhibition


Tuesday, 6 April 2010


Not enough menswear on the blog, I say.

Some recent CSM graduates:

Jae Hwan Kim (MA Fashion)

Xiao Xiao Dong (BA Fashion)

Kye (BA Fashion)

Wonder what 2010 has in store for us...


Monday, 5 April 2010

Oliver Messel Suite at the Dorchester

In 1953, Oliver Messel, the grandson of Marion Sambourne and Edward Linley of 18 Stafford Terrace, was commissioned to design the interior of a suite in the Dorchester Hotel in London. It is said that the condition was that 'he would be happy to live in it himself.' True to his family's decor sensibility the suite is described to have a 'considerable dose of fantasy' and is today preserved as part of Britain's national heritage. It was restored in the 1980's by many of the original craftsmen and the restoration works were overseen by Oliver Messel's favorite nephew, Lord Snowdon. The suite is said to be and have been Elizabeth Taylor and Michael Jackson's favourite place to stay in London.


The House Legacy Part II

Oliver Messel was one of the most noted set and costume designers in the UK in the 20th century as well as being the maternal grandchild of Marion Sambourne and Edward Linley of 18 Stafford Terrace. He was educated at the Slade School of Fine Art, University College and proceeded to design the masks of a ballet production by Serge Diaghilev. During the 30's, 40's and 50's, he enchanted the British audiences by his 'fantastic and romantic' sets and costumes, until in his mid-50's when he went on a holiday to the Caribbean and discovered a love for 'designing, building and transforming homes.' He passed away there at the age of 74 in 1978. Some examples of his set and costume designs.

Oliver Messel working on Gloriana costume V&A images

Oliver Messel with his sister Anne, Countess of Rosse (Lord Snowdon's mother) 
1932, Brighton Museum.

Margot Fonteyn's Sleeping Beauty costume by Oliver Messel 
for the opening of Covent Garden after the war
photograph: Sarah Lee (Guardian)

Le Nozze de Figaro by Mozart
Glyndebourne Festival Opera 1958
Set and Costume Design by Oliver Messel

Vivian Leigh (Scarlet in Gone With the Wind) in Cesar and Cleopatra 1945
costume design by Oliver Messel


Sunday, 4 April 2010

I think I was abducted as a child..

...and my real parents are Tim Burton and Helena Bonham-Carter. How much more Brit eccentric fairytale can you be in real life? I am certain they have a wooden wardrobe in their house that take them to Narnia, that they send their children to Neverland on school vacations and that Helena dropped a glass shoe and Tim picked it up and looked after her in all of the kingdom. That is my kind of Ever After.


The house legacy part I

The maternal great-grandson of Marion Sambourne and Edward Linley who initially bought and built up 18 Stafford Terrace, Anthony Armstrong-Jones known as Lord Snowdon, is a portrait photographer and Emmy-winning documentary filmmaker who was married to Princess Margaret, the Queen's sister, in 1960 to 1978. He is widely famous for his excellent portraits of sitters such as Princess Diana but also for his many flirtations. Here is a selection of his work.

Princess Margaret and Lord Snowdon

Princess Diana

Dame Helen Mirren

Rudolphe Nureyev

David Bowie


the magic of photography

In the recent year, TV, film and photography has turned to fairytales and the supernatural for inspiration. Alice in Wonderland, the Twilight series and Avatar has all been drawn into the public conscience and appreciated by all ages and backgrounds. Why I wonder? Isn't our own world enough, why do we look beyond what is immediately around us? Maybe, we find it hard to discover the magic in what is too close. David Griffin is the Photography Director of the National Geographic, here uncovering the visual narratives that is photography and putting new light on the stories that make up our world.


Fat Duck


More here.


Friday, 2 April 2010

Happy Easter!



Half-dozing on a bus while crossing Namibia, I sat up straight in my seat when I thought I saw a woman in a bright dress with a huge crinoline and several petticoats outside the window. Naah, I thought, I must only be so hooked on the exhibit that I am going nuts, imagining Victorian dresses in the middle of the red sands. Suddenly, the bus turned a corner and stalled on a large square filled with women in huge colourful crinolines and horn hats. I couldn't believe my eyes, but my tour-guide soon told me that these women were part of the Herero, a cattle farming tribe, and their dress was picked up from early Victorian missionaires in the 1850's and the rolled cloth hats symbolises the horn of the cows. I tried to ask if I could take a picture but I couldn't make myself understood and apparently they are a very proud tribe and I didn't want to offend anyone.. thus pictures are from google :)


From Atlantis

Vogue Nippon May 2010

Monday, 29 March 2010

Big Cat Diary

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac (A/W '09)

Sir David Attenborough would be proud.


Big Love

Chloe Sevigny for Russian Bazaar