Regular readers will be more than familiar with my family’s obsession with Chatsworth House in Derbyshire. We are frequent visitors there, have held Gold Friend membership for almost 10 years and our adventures around the estate often feature on this blog.
As Chatsworth is such a huge part of our life, this year I have decided to dedicate a whole series to the 2017 season at Chatsworth House. There will be reviews on events, food, shopping and anything else that catches my attention.
For the first post, I’ll be writing about the latest installation in Chatsworth House – the House Style exhibition. The exhibition showcases five hundred years of fashion at Chatsworth. The collection combines fashion with art and history, including work from renowned designers such as Christian Dior, Stella McCartney and Alexander McQueen.
I don’t think I have the words to explain quite how spectacular the exhibition is, but I’m certainly going to try along with some photographs of my favourite pieces from the collection.
Each room in the house has taken on a theme and the artwork and exhibits in that room have been chosen to perfectly complement the theme. Even the display cases and mannequins were works of art, each slightly different. The collection was curated by Hamish Bowles, International Editor-at-Large at American Vogue, with creative direction and design by Patrick Kinmonth and Antonio Monfreda. It was clear that every single detail had been thought about and carefully planned. The overall effect was stunning.
The Painted Hall, easily on of the most impressive rooms in the house has been transformed with the theme Traditions and Transgressions, looking at the evolution of formalwear. One of the show pieces is this gown worn by the Duchess of Devonshire at the coronation of HM Queen Elizabeth II
The chapel has a particularly striking display called The Circle of Life, which takes us from cradle to grave. It features adorable christening gowns, beautiful mourning wear and some truly stunning wedding gowns worn by members of the Devonshire family throughout the years. I was blown away by the variety of styles on display.
I loved the mixture of fashions from historical to contemporary. The state drawing room featured costumes from the 1897 Devonshire House costume ball. As someone who’s been to a number of masquerade balls at Chatsworth, this was one of my favourite sections. Maybe for the next ball I can try and replicate one of the costumes seen here.
Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire was known for being a style icon in her time and is the inspiration behind the South Sketch Gallery, which exhibits some amazing examples of couture fashion, including this stunning ensemble from Stella McCartney.
My absolutely favourite piece in the entire collection was this majestic ballgown designed by John Galliano for Christian Dior. I absolutely adored this little corner of the house and could happily have sat there for hours. I would kill to wear a dress that beautiful one day!
In the Orangery shop, you can buy a House Style book to accompany the exhibit. I think it was £35 which is quite steep, but I’m sure if you’re a fashion fan it would make a lovely collectible item. I think there is a good chance that I will be picking this up before the end of the exhibit to help me remember how beautiful all of the displays were.
The Chatsworth House Style exhibit will be showing in the house until 22nd October 2017 and if you are a lover of fashion, history or just Chatsworth itself I would highly recommend you head over for a visit. It is far more special to look at than I could ever explain in this post.
For more details on the exhibition or to book your tickets, go to the Chatsworth House official website.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the first in my Chatsworth 2017 Season series. I’m aiming for one post a month (at least) to pop back in May to see where my next adventure takes me…