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New embellishment in fashion exhibition from the RSN

By Mark Hayhurst 06 Jul 2017

The Royal School of Needlework is opening a new exhibition Embellishment in Fashion at Hampton Court Palace.

Throughout the years, both professional and amateur dressmakers have used embroidery and beading to embellish garments and accessories.

This exciting new display, which begins on September 26, from the RSN’s unique Textile Collection captures the style and versatility of embroidery and embellishment from the 18th to 20th centuries.

It will showcase a wide range of pieces from blouses and men’s waistcoats to purses, gloves and shoes. There are different tour options to suit all interests including Talk & Tours, Tour & Taster workshops; as well as Curator’s Tours that include rare insights to additional pieces from the RSN Collection. They also offer bespoke group tours. Tours start from £16 per person and the exhibition runs until March 2018. To book your place and view a diverse range of fashion pieces spanning 200 years, visit the RSN’s website or contact Natalie Thew on 020 3166 6939.

The exhibition is in the RSN’s Embroidery Studio at Hampton Court Palace and only open on set days, so pre-booking is essential. Embellishment in Fashion is curated by the RSN’s chief executive Dr Susan Kay-Williams and Dr Clare Rose, an international expert in the history of fashion and senior lecturer in Contextual Studies on the RSN’s Degree Course.

Dr Susan Kay-Williams said: “Whether a garment is covered with embroidery, affecting the complete look or it features a scattering of beading to achieve a more subtle, elegant finish, it is wonderful to see how embroidery and embellishment have influenced fashion through the centuries. It is vital that the skilled techniques of hand embroidery continue to pass on to new generations. We are delighted that the traditional art of embroidery is back in vogue and continues to influence fashion in the modern world.”

The Royal School of Needlework is the international centre of excellence for the art of hand embroidery. It offers a range of courses for beginners through to advanced. Students can choose to study short courses, a Certificate & Diploma in Technical Hand Embroidery, BA (Hons) Hand Embroidery for Fashion, Interiors, Textile Art and the RSN’s Future Tutors programme which trains Tutors for the next generation.

The RSN teaches at Hampton Court Palace, Exeter, Bristol, Rugby, Durham and Glasgow, and internationally in Ireland, North America and Japan.

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