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Costume Drama: Fashion From 1780–1850

Start Date 08 July 2011
End Date 07 May 2012
Venue Sudley House
Location Liverpool, UK

This exhibition explores the development of fashionable dress between 1790 and 1850, a period of rapid social, economic and political change. Exactly two hundred years after the publication of Jane Austen’s first novel, ‘Sense and Sensibility’, visitors to Sudley House will be able to see original clothes and accessories from her time.

Viewers of popular television adaptations, such as Austen’s ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and Elizabeth Gaskell’s ‘Cranford’ novels are sure to enjoy this collection of early and rare garments. Highlights include a man’s court suit from the 1790s or early 1800s, richly embroidered with multi-coloured silks and a brilliant yellow silk brocade evening dress, from the early 1840s.

They will be placed in their wider social and historic contexts through a wide range of contemporary fashion plates, engravings and drawings.