Downton in uptown NYC...

by - Friday, February 16, 2018

I think accepting change is quite as important as defending the past. ~ The Countess of Grantham, Cora

Yes, as a proclaimed fan of Downton Abbey, change was most certainly something I had to accept as the series came to closure in 2015. Oh, how I miss the show! I know I'm not alone. Luckily, our collective is able to sustain fandom by immersing ourselves at the current exhibit in New York City. Downton Abbey: The Exhibition, extended through April 2nd by popular demand, is an exceptional treat for fans and history buffs alike.

We began the tour "downstairs" in the servants quarters after being greeted by a digital Mrs. Hughes, escorting us through the kitchen. It was as if Mrs. Patmore and Daisy were in the midst of their daily dinner drill, cut vegetables and baking bowls assembled before us on the table, pots on the stove. 

We visited the servants dining room, and got a chance to engage in some fun interactive queries. After filling out a digital questionnaire, if interested in working with the staff at Downton, based on my answers, I might be well suited for the position of cook! 

Traveling "upstairs", we continued through recreated rooms of the house, decorative couturier ensembles sprinkled amid our path. The clothing has always been a treat for me. Costumes played a proportionate role in this exhibit. During our visit to an earlier traveling display at Winterthur, Dressing Downton, the clothing was the premier focus. 

You’ll find there’s never a dull moment in this house. ~ The Dowager Countess, Violet

This is certain! Peeking into Lady Mary's bedroom, Carson's office and the majestic adorned dining room, I felt as if we were actual guests of the estate. Every surface displayed an acute attention to detail which added to the charm and enchantment of the show. One of my favorite parts of the exhibit was entering into a large room of digital transcendence. With all four walls continually changing around, one minute we were standing in the parlor, next in war battle trenches with Matthew under bullets and sprays of mud, then privy to private exchanges between the family in the great hall. It was superbly done.

Beads, bargello and brocade were the most beautiful eye candy. Costumes on display portrayed all six seasons of the series. It was exciting to test our memory by guessing who wore each ensemble before checking answers on the placards. The styles are iconic and on point for not only the period fashion they represented, but contemporary inspiration as well.

We took our time perusing through multiple floors for a total of three hours, determined to study the archives expanded by multi-dimensional display. Digital images combined with detailed props and bits of yesteryear kept my history fan hubby totally engaged and impressed throughout.

If you are a die-hard Downton, days of old devotee, or just looking for something extra-special to do in the metropolitan area, gather yourself with a few friends at Downton in uptown NYC... xoxo-Sonya

Oh get off with you, you cheeky devil. ~ Mrs. Patmore

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