Dressed for Battle Study Day

Fashions from the Home Front
Lotherton Hall, Aberford, Leeds, LS25 3EB
17th October 2013
A study day to coincide with the exhibition ‘Dressed for Battle’ in the Fashion
Galleries at Lotherton Hall. The day will explore the impact the two World Wars
had on civilian clothing with a series of talks and a chance to get up close to clothing
from the period.
Parking is available on site. On the day participants need to make their way to the
front door, of Lotherton Hall, for registration in the Great Hall. All the talks will be
held in the Drawing Room.
Programme for the Day
9.30 – 10.00
Registration with tea and coffee in the Great
10.00 – 10.15
Welcome and introduction to the day
10.15 – 12.15
Great War Fashion - the British
Woman's Wardrobe in World War One
12.15 – 1.00
Lunch in the Stables Café
1.00 – 1.30
Free time to see the Hall and/or the exhibition
‘Dressed for Battle’
1.30 – 2.15
Clothing for all - the critical significance
of dress in the early years of World War
2.15 – 2.25
2.25 – 3.10
Make Do and Mend
3.10 – 3.20
3.20 – 3.45
3.45 – 4.15
Demob Suits and Post-War Menswear
4.15 – 4.30
Questions and round up of the day
End of the day and departure. Please note the
Hall closes at 5pm.
Natalie Raw
Lucy Adlington
Dr. Geraldine
Meridith Towne
Danielle Sprecher
Ticket price
£30 for the day including lunch and refreshments or £25 for Lotherton Season
Ticket Holders
Fashions from the Home Front
Lotherton Hall, Aberford, Leeds, LS25 3EB
17th October 2013
Lucy Adlington
Great War Fashion - the British Woman's Wardrobe in World War
World War One was an extraordinary period of change for women's lives and
wardrobes, seeing cropped hair, rising hemlines and even women in trousers. 'Great
War Fashion' at Lotherton Hall will be a unique opportunity to find out more about
this often overlooked era, when even the most ordinary garments have a story to
tell. There will be a fascinating array of original clothes and accessories for hands-on
study, from clogs and factory togs, to silk gowns and corsets. You are invited to
read wartime editions of Vogue magazine, handle a nurse's dress from Harrods, or
admire a cheeky woollen swimsuit...
Lucy Adlington is a costume historian specialising in the early 20th Century. She
runs the popular History Wardrobe series of presentations, which focus on
showcasing women's lives through costume. Her book Great War Fashion will be
published by the History Press in October, and launched at the Cheltenham Festival.
Dr. Geraldine Howell
Clothing for all - the significance of dress during the earliest part of
World War 2
As Britain mobilised for war no plan yet existed for specific economies in terms of
the commercial production of civilian clothing. My talk looks at the story of clothing
from the beginning of the war, what people wore, how clothing and textiles became
a focus for both public and governmental concern and how the first period of the
war re-orientated perceptions about the provenance, purpose and provision of
clothing across the civilian population.
Dress historian Dr. Geraldine Howell lectured for many years on the Fashion Design
degree at University of Westminster and is currently a freelance writer and lecturer.
Her book 'Wartime Fashion from Haute Couture to Home Made 1939-1945' was
published by Berg in December 2012.
Fashions from the Home Front
Lotherton Hall, Aberford, Leeds, LS25 3EB
17th October 2013
Meridith Towne
Make Do and Mend
During World War Two, Mrs Sew and Sew invited women across Britain to take up
their needle and thread, to grab their husbands’ pyjamas, and create the season’s
latest frocks!
From handy hints to make their wardrobes go further, to the production of Utility
clothing, the government dominated women’s fashion during the war urging them to
‘Make Do and Mend’.
At Lotherton Hall you will have the chance to see original ephemera and clothes
from the ‘Make Do and Mend’ era. You will hear about the options women had
when shopping and how they personalised their clothes and made household items,
including rag rugs using men’s (clean) pants!
Meridith Towne is a costume historian and dressmaker, recently featured on the
BBC’s Great British Sewing Bee. She makes historical costumes for museum and reenactment use, plus presenting a series of lively costume talks covering over 100
years of fascinating women’s history.
Danielle Sprecher
Demob Suits and Post-War Menswear
Towards the end of World War Two the British government faced a huge challenge
– millions of men serving in the armed forces would be demobilized. It was decided
that they would be given a suit – the demob suit. These ordinary civilian outfits
became very controversial, some people liking them and others loathing them. Find
out about the history of the demob suit, its impact on men’s fashion and the vital
role the Leeds tailoring industry played in making them.
Danielle Sprecher is a fashion historian and costume curator. She is currently
researching the history of the Leeds tailoring industry and men’s fashion from the
1940s to the 1970s for a PhD at the University of Leeds and in collaboration with
Leeds Museums and Galleries.