Top and Tails - Jennifer Owen

©Victoria and Albert Museum, London View Inspiration Details

Artist Statement

Jennifer Owen

I am currently studying Design and Production of Displays and Interior Visual Merchandising with the British Display Society. When visiting the V and A I am always drawn to the fashion collections and so I knew that my inspiration would come from the area of historical fashion.
I chose the corset stays primarily because of the shape but I wanted my piece to be highly decorative rather than practical.
My course has taught me the importance of eye-catching displays and mannequins feature heavily. Therefore, in the spirit of beautiful, if somewhat impractical, clothing, my piece is inspired by the feminine shape of the corset.
I have used the lacing element of the corset to enhance the back of the garment. The feminine silhouette is contrasted by the masculine shape of the tailcoat at the back of the piece.
The bodice can be worn over clothing and has been designed so that the lacing at the back can be completely removed and adjusted for fit.
I simply wrapped wire around the basic bodice form and used glass beads together with nylon coated wire and ribbon for decoration. The ribbon is translucent so that the piece is see through when displayed on its own. No adhesive was used.

Top and Tails - Jennifer Owen

©Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Inspiration details:


Stays (Underwear)

Great Britain, Uk (made)

1780 - 1789 (made)

Unknown (production)

Linen, hand sewn with linen thread, applied ribbon, chamois and whalebone

V&A collection reference number(s):

2015 Exhibition Guide

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