Downton dressing in detail...

by - Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Stepping into the room, it was thrilling to be so close to the personified characters... Thomas, Mrs. Hughes, Lady Mary Crawley, Rose MacClare, all coming to life before us in Dressing DowntonWith the costume exhibit's huge success preceding the announcement of their sixth and last season, the ensemble is traveling through 2018 with visits in Virginia, all the way down to Florida and over to California, plus several stops in between. We were fortunate to catch the very first exhibit at Winterthur in Delaware. Oh to see the glorious details up close! One of the costume designers, award-winning Susannah Buxton (seasons one through three)  has been deemed a "sculptress-in-cloth" by creator of Downton Abbey, Julian Fellowes. With the authentic attire on display, it was easy to see why.

"Some of the costumes I'm most proud of are the ones you wouldn't necessarily think about because the clothes naturally belong to the character. They don't look like actors in costumes. They look like real people." ~ Susannah Buxton

At the Winterthur exhibit, life-size stills from the show created scenery for the wardrobe and accessories with script excerpts and historical commentary paralleling period life.

I thoroughly enjoyed viewing the color-rich embroideries and meticulous embellishment on the garments. As huge fans drifting along the path of the exhibit, it was fun to recall the episodes where they each originated.

Caroline McCall designed costumes for season four, a challenging short span from 1922 to 1923. She stayed true to the sensual and elegant bias-cut silhouettes of the early 20's, the result of an intense period of post World War One creativity from Europe.

Reminiscent of Matthew Crawley's proposal to Lady Mary, showering lights from above created a magical ambiance as we watched her acceptance in the falling snow and moonlight in the video backdrop.

Ah, to once again enjoy Downton dressing in detail... Such inspiration! xoxo-Sonya

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