Image of a painting of an aircraft assembly shop in World War One

The Great War in Costume - exhibition at the Assembly Rooms, Bath

Image: painting of a First World War aircraft assembly shop, copyright: Imperial War Museum


Until 31 August 2014 at the Assembly Rooms in Bath, visitors can view a new exhibition compiled and curated to mark the centenary of the First World War.

'The Great War in Costume: Family & Fashion on the Home Front' traces women’s lives and roles during this savage conflict; their work on the home front and how that influenced the dress that they adopted.

"The war is usually seen through military eyes.  However, it could not have been won without the efforts of millions of women. They proved what they could do  – what took a great deal longer was to convince everyone that they should do it." from 'Fighting on the Home Front:  The Legacy of Women in World War One’ by  Kate  Adie, (Hodder &  Stoughton)

World War One changed women’s life forever; in terms of status, class, position and what was acceptable for a woman to wear. Fashion changed with the innovation of women being required to do men’s work. The corset disappeared and trousers became a norm.

The exhibition features examples of uniforms and civilian dress, memorabilia and propaganda, and numerous costumes from the popular television series Downton Abbey.

A press release can be read using this link

Special Event to accompany the exhibition:

'Women and the Great WarWednesday 6 August 2014, 2.30pm

Tickets £10/£8 from Bath Box Office.  Join author and broadcaster Lucy Adlington on a journey into the lives of these women and admire an array of stunning, original clothes. Ticket price includes entry to the exhibition 'The Great War in Costume'.

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