Captivating Fashions of Yesteryear
This exhibition chronicles the clothing, stories and styles of several Clarence Valley women.
This exhibition chronicles the clothing, stories and styles of several Clarence Valley women. Clothing is an important part of the Clarence Valley's unique cultural heritage and reclaimed, pre-loved textiles tell rich stories of both the fashion itself, and the people who wore them. These clothes all belonged to women widely loved in the Clarence Valley. Their wardrobes remind us of important events in our history - from Jacaranda Festivals past, July Racing Carnivals and formal balls, to everyday life, featuring leisurewear and casual social ensembles.
The elegant dresses, bright knits, handmade hats, bold racing suits and ball gowns connect the women who wore these outfits to the wider movements of fashion across the world. We see the flapper styles of the 1920s, the bold and masculine shapes of 1980s women’s suiting, elegant ball gowns, the influence of art and creativity in fabric design, the introduction of pants in women’s clothing, and more.
The clothing in this exhibition is drawn from private collector Kathy Smith's collection, The Way We Wore. This collection has evolved over many years as a result of Kathy's passion for the art and history of women's fashion. The pieces in the collection have been donated by owners and family members, and are carefully cared for by Kathy. Members of the community can often see the pieces on show in special fashion parades and events throughout the Clarence Valley.
Image credit: Green satin bodice and black taffeta skirt Handmade, Simplicity pattern, c1955, Worn by Audrey Morgan
The Way We Wore Collection
This project is proudly supported by the NSW Government through Create NSW