Thursday, 29 December 2016

Missoni Art Colour

I am jumping back to the end of August here because I have to get this post written and these photos used before the end of the year. It has been in the planning and editing stage for a while and I just need to get it written so that it doesn't go to waste!

The Fashion and Textile Museum hosted this Missoni exhibition from May-September and I was fortunate to catch it the week before it finished. My friend and I had a couple of days in London and this was one of the reasons that we went and we were very glad that we did.

The premise of the exhibition was to 'explore the creative process of the Italian fashion house Missoni and the textiles of Ottavio and Rosita Missoni in the context of 20th century fine art'.

Spatial structure in tension. 1952. Nino Di Salvatore
Ballerina. 1957. Gino Severini.
The beginning of the exhibition showed some of the artworks that have been an influence on the style of the Missoni house. These two were my favourites, I loved the colours.

We then walked through into the large exhibition space where there were lots of mannequins dressed in Missoni standing on tiered platforms. It was very dramatic and there was a sequence of lighting which illuminated the mannequins in various stages. It was very impressive but did make it harder to get to see everything in good light.

On the opposite wall there were textile hangings made by Ottavio Missoni, some of which he used to trial different colour ways and patterns.

We spent quite some time looking at the tiers of mannequins and their marvellous clothes. Mostly we were choosing our favourite outfits and deciding which our top five would be. There was no information available about the outfits so I am not able to say anything useful about when they are from or what they are made of. So these are just some of my favourites:

Look at the belt buckle.

I managed to get a few detailed shots of colours or patterns that I particularly liked. This was quite difficult as it was not possible to get near the mannequins except for those on the first tier.

Might need to knit something lovely and lacy in these colours.
This reminds me of patchwork.
I like the autumn colours.
The exhibition continued upstairs in the museum and showed some more of the Missoni design process including fabric swatches, sketch books, colour and pattern ideas. It was fascinating to get an insight into this process.

The above pictures show the sketch books, I found them really interesting, seeing the charting out of and the playing with the colours.

These are some of the fabric samples, including some of the very famous Missoni zigzags.

The final room showed a film about Missoni which we watched whilst sat on Missoni fabric covered bean bags surrounded by Missoni fabric framed mirrors. It was a whole wonderful explosion of colour and pattern.

 The above two photos are of the fabric mirror surrounds.

I wore the most Missoni like patterned dress that I have!

Saturday, 24 December 2016

Top Ten vintage Christmas gift wrap

As I have been busy wrapping presents for the last few days I thought that I would take a little break before finishing off to look back at the gift wrap I might have chosen if I went back in time. I'm quite drawn to highly illustrated, brightly coloured, slightly kitsch vintage gift wrap which sort of surprises me as in real life I am a brown paper and a nice piece of ribbon wrapper. Perhaps it is my alter ego coming out. You can find more vintage Christmas goodness on my Pinterest board The ghost of Christmas past and in this post.

In no particular order here are my Top Ten, all found on Pinterest:


Poodles wearing ribbons tying ribbons. What is not to like?!

Jolly snowmen in a variety of scarves and hats on a lovely coloured background.

Clever typography, a colour scheme with impact and beautiful illustration.

I had to include a reindeer and these ones have decorations swinging from their antlers.

Mid Century, atomic and a fabulous colour scheme.

Cute little colourful houses all lit up and glowing in the snow.

Unusual but lovely colour scheme and a real feeling of movement.

Snowflake ballerinas? Go on then.

Pine needles and snowflakes and pretty colours.

More poodles. I love their extreme curl coats and their turquoise noses.

Are you a kitsch or classy gift wrapper? Merry Christmas everyone.

Tuesday, 20 December 2016

More 1900's town at Beamish.

Shall we jump back on the tram for a further look at the 1900's town? Catch up with the previous post    about the town here.

Get settled down at the table
Here we have the pub, The Sun Inn, on the left, ready for you to pop in for a cosy pint. The square gateway leads to the stables and coach yard. In the green fronted building the stationers is downstairs and the printers, where you can watch type setting in action, is located above.

The stationers window
Horses being shod in the stable yard.
Inside the printers
Inside the stationers.

On the side wall of the printers.
Advertising sign in the form of a thermometer.
On this side of the road we can also visit the sweet shop so I think maybe we should pop in. If we are lucky we will get to see sweets being made, and maybe even get a taster.

The window display is tempting.
Making traditional local sweets

As we cross the road we go past the Beamish Motor and Cycle Works and have a little daydream about a fabulous new car. Then we come to a little parade of shops run by the Co-operative Society.

The window displays are very exciting: groceries, hardware, kitchenware, china, haberdashery, furs, shirts and bonnets. Pretty much everything that you could need. I think we should take a look inside at the grocery, drapery and hardware departments.

A large choice of groceries

The ornate till
Fabric in the haberdashery
Cotton, darning wool, crochet and knitting wool.
A coat in the drapers
Lino in the hardware shop
I think we better leave the Co-op Stores in case we spend all our money. We could head to Herron's Bakery for a little snack.

Beautiful stained glass windows.
Warm and welcoming in the bakery with marvellous smells.
The bakers at work
Now we have seen most of the shops in the town. There is also the bank and the masonic hall, then the solicitors, dentist and music teachers all located in Ravensworth Terrace. I think we will save these for another time.