Fashion and Flowers in Chelsea

Gillian Nunns, Reference Librarian writes…

We noticed some new trends on the King’s Road over the past week… garden inspired shop-fronts, beautiful floral dresses and new visitors to Chelsea Library, who are exploring the area whilst visiting the Chelsea Flower Show.  Surrounded by so much floral beauty and enthusiasm, we’ve also caught the flower fever and been inspired to explore fashion and flowers in our Costume & Fashion collection.

The Chelsea Flower show in the 1920s:

From The Chelsea Flower Show by Hesten Marsden-Smedley
Taken from The Chelsea Flower Show by Hesten Marsden-Smedley

And we love this image of the flower show in 1918, showing off the fashions of the time:

From The Chelsea Flower Show by Hesten Marsden-Smedley
From The Chelsea Flower Show by Hesten Marsden-Smedley

In our Vogue magazine archives we found lots of garden-inspired illustrations, fashions and adverts from the May and June issues in the 1920s.  In May 1926, as well as checking out the flower show, here is what you mind find shopping along Sloane Street:

Vogue, May 1926 edition
Vogue, May 1926 edition

And from the same month, an illustration of a fashionable garden of the time:

Vogue, May 1926 Ed.
Vogue, May 1926 ed.

And when it rains…

Stormproof... taken from Vogue May 1926 Ed.
Stormproof… taken from Vogue May 1926 ed.

We liked this arty picture from Vogue May 1924, with the shadows of trees in the background, entitled Flowered crepe is a medium of the mode:

Taken from the Vogue archives, 1924
Taken from the Vogue archives, 1924

In June 1929, a model poses in a rock garden:

The description for this beautiful dress also sounds like a delicious dessert.
The description for this beautiful dress also sounds like a rather delicious dessert.

In fact, everywhere we looked in the May and June Vogue issues we found flowers and gardens.  Here is Twiggy in May 1967 and on her dress is a “Pyramid Myriad of Flowers, triangles of tiny multi colored ones….”:

Twiggy from the May 1967 edition of Vogue
Twiggy from the May 1967 edition of Vogue

In the 60s Ossie Clark and Celia Birtwell had a chic Chelsea boutique Quorum, and we found this great floral design of theirs from 1968:

From Fifty Fashion Looks that Changed the 1960s
From Fifty Fashion Looks that Changed the 1960s

Fast forward again to May 1988, a budding affair:

A fashion shoot from May 1988
A fashion shoot from May 1988

 

 

We hope you enjoyed  taking a quick browse through the flowers and fashions at Chelsea Library.  There is lots more to discover in the library and online, in the Berg Fashion Library Online, which you can access for free with your library card.

Planning a holiday? Get some insider knowledge…

The Reference Library holds a variety of trade magazines and publication covering a wide range of interests- we really do have something for everyone!

The Travel Trade Gazette is a weekly magazine for the travel industry and has been in circulation since 1954 and for anyone interested in travel and holidays (that’s all of us, then!).  The Gazette includes news on all travel and hospitality sectors:  well known and lesser known companies feature, and interesting histories of well known travel companies making changes in today’s very competitive consumer market.

Travel Trade Gazette
Travel Trade Gazette

One of the regular gazette features is TTG Toolkit, which focuses on particular aspects of promoting and marketing a business: entitled, for example, Marketing Magic, Selling Power and Mystery Shopper.

  • Marketing Magic advises companies how to sell themselves or market the company, instead of focusing solely on product sell.   You’ll find very useful tips for any customer-based industry! (“Cocktail for success”, 27.03.2014).
  • Selling Power focuses on the success of a sweet shop founded 6 years ago turned into a travel agency (“Sweet success” 10.04/2014)
  • Mystery Shopper compares high street travel companies with online travel websites, offering online help in travel bookings, useful from a consumer view as to what to look for when using online travel sites.

    Travel Trade Gazette
    Travel Trade Gazette

Each edition includes plenty of  information for travel agents on holiday destinations and offers which they canpass on to their customers, as well as regular features on specific destinations such as the Caribbean, detailing activities and places to stay, with some handy tried-and-tested tips on how to make the most out of your holiday!

Overall, it is good magazine for professionals working in the travel industry as well as travellers seeking a little insider knowledge. We started taking the Gazette from January 2014 and our file length is 6 months, and it’s just one of the many titles we offer at the Reference Library!

For a full list of all the titles we hold, please click here. Don’t forget, these magazines are all free to browse- so if you’re looking for serious study materials or for an interesting read, you will be spoilt for choice! Staff are always on hand to offer help and support- please email information@rbkc.gov.uk for further details.

Calling all history buffs!

Roz Banks, our Tri-borough Customer Services Assistant, writes:

Do you consider yourself a bit of a history buff? Do you want to learn more about our ancestors or how people lived in the past? Perhaps you are an amateur archaeologist, a student of history or just enjoy delving into the past? Then why not pay a visit to Kensington Reference Library and pick up one of our exciting history or archaeology magazines!

We stock the following magazines and also keep back issues:

BBC History
BBC History

BBC History is a monthly publication devoted to British and world history. This exciting publication brings history to life and is the UK’s biggest selling history magazine! Each month you will find topical features, historical analysis, and podcasts featuring interviews with leading academics and historians. The magazine also has regular book reviews, exhibition news and history events taking place around the UK. There is also a monthly crossword for all you history buffs!

 

History Today
History Today

History Today is a monthly magazine that covers all periods of British history and the rest of the world. It features serious and interesting articles from academics and historians covering lots of new research, reviews and narrative history.

April’s issue features articles on Ukraine, Church and State, Garibaldi in London and Compensating the Railway.

 

Current Archaeology
Current Archaeology

Current Archaeology is the UK’s biggest selling archaeology magazine.  It is published monthly and features regular articles on excavation, reviews and the latest archaeology news.

In the May edition read all about the Anglo –Saxon Staffordshire Hoard, and the Neolithic Revolution in Britain and Ireland. Plus there is also an exciting review about the new Vikings life and legend exhibition at the British museum.

These magazines and more are all available at the Central Reference Library– come in for a browse and you may find yourself on a journey into the past!