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Gallery of Costume

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Greater Manchester

Fine threads through the ages, with plenty of impressive temporary exhibitions to boot


Outside the city centre, just after the curry mile of Rusholme and in the grounds of Platt Fields Park, the elegant eighteenth century Platt Hall houses a quite fabulous collection of clothes in its Gallery of Costume.

It's the largest collection of its type in Britain. And there's an awful lot that isn't on show - over 20,000 items in fact - because there just isn't the space. But what we do get is high fashion and an enormous amount of style, from the seventeenth century to the present day. Men, women and children are represented, and the exhibition programme collects items for temporary display; wedding fashions, or pieces from designers like Ossie Clarke or Christian Dior, for example. There's also a fine collection of fashions from Manchester's South Asian communities.

Displays of shoes and hats through the ages make you realise just how much our body sizes have changed - and indeed our tastes. Recent acquisitions such as a Givenchy dress once belonging to Audrey Hepburn keep the collection vibrant and well away from the scent of mothballs.

With such sartorial elegance in such fine surroundings, you might find yourself checking out your reflection on the way out. Drab darling, drab, and lime is definitely not your colour.

Venue name: Gallery of Costume
Address: Platt Hall

Rusholme
Manchester
M14 5LL
Venue phone: 0161 245 7245
Website: http://www.manchestergalleries.org/our-other-venues/platt-hall-gallery-of-costume/
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