As the autumn nights draw in and we bid farewell to the final rays of summer, you are cordially invited to join me at my Theatre of Fashion lecture series at Hackney’s newest museum, The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities. I’m excited to announce that I’m the Fashion Director of the museum (formerly the Little Shop of Horrors on Mare Street) which is part of The Last Tuesday Society.
The series kicks off this month, with me in conversation with visionary make-up artist Alex Box, covering areas concerning the role of alternative beauty ideals, her brand Illamasqua, and, in time for Halloween, “The Final Act of Self-Expression” – an initiative for post-mortem beauty run by Illamasqua make-up artists and funeral directors Leverton & Sons.
November update: Tansy Hoskins is no longer able to join us, so we’ll be welcoming Owen Espley from War on Want in her place
In November, join me for a night of Fashion Activism as Owen Espley and Carry Somers take to the stage to debate their approaches to changing the industry for the better. While fashion as a means of personal expression is celebrated, fashion as an industry comes under criticism for its materialism and unregulated outsourcing of manufacture. Owen Espley is the Senior Economic Justice Campaigner at War on Want, where he leads the Love Fashion Hate Sweatshops campaign on labour rights in fashion supply chains. Carry Somers is the founder of Fashion Revolution Day which promotes transparency and accountability in fashion production, sparked by the Rana Plaza disaster in Bangladesh. She is also creative director of fair trade luxury millinery brand Pachacuti.
In December, Ian Kelly - author of books on Beau Brummell and Casanova among others – will be joining us to discuss his latest venture: the memoir of Dame Vivienne Westwood, which he co-authored. In this illustrated lecture the authorised life-story of the Grande Dame of British fashion is told for the first time by her biographer.
I’m afraid that Alex Box is already SOLD OUT, however you can get tickets for Fashion Activism with Carry Somers & Owen Espley (November 12th) HERE, and Ian Kelly on Vivienne Westwood (December 4th) HERE. The Last Tuesday Society has put on almost 500 lectures and salons over the last ten years so it’s really exciting to add a Theatre of Fashion series to the roster. More information on all the talks right here.
And if that wasn’t enough, you can also find me at Cultures of the Dark Side: A Day of Gothic Music and Fashion, a day of talks, discussions and performances in celebration of alternative style and music as part of the current exhibition Terror and Wonder: The Gothic Imagination at the British Library. I will be chairing the discussion The New Black: From Subculture to High Culture looking at the influence of the gothic on fashion design. Full details to be announced soon!
Terror and Wonder is the UK’s biggest ever Gothic exhibition and it showcases a huge range of material from medieval chivalric romances to Hammer Horror and Alexander McQueen. It’s an absolute must for fans of the genre and is perfect for Halloween season.
Cultures of the Dark Side: A Day of Gothic Music and Fashion at the British Library, Sunday 9th November. More information and tickets here and here.
In other news…
I spoke to BBC News magazine about heritage in fashion, in a piece on the history of Barbour. Read it here. I was also asked about the history of the trench coat and the links between military uniform and fashion. Read it right here.
I was invited onto Radio 4’s Today programme to chat cravats with Nicholas Parsons. How could I refuse?! Listen again here.
And I was back on Woman’s Hour, this time discussing sumptuary laws and fashion police. You can hear it here.