Journey to Winterthur for the Costumes of Downton Abbey

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Yesterday was pure heaven for me! Since being introduced to this wonderful period drama, both Will and I have been hooked. I adore all of the characters and stories of this show and I’m constantly intrigued at the idea of peeking into the daily lives of the Crawley Family and the servants that keep this massive estate running smoothly.

And then of course there is the fashion! The first season starts off in April of 1912 with the sinking of the Titanic. With its stunning display of Edwardian fashion with large hats, long gloves and intricately beaded dresses, the show moves through time with this most current season ending in 1923. So now we have 11 years of fashion trends to witness. With season 4 we are now starting to see the fabulous 1920s styles of hair with finger waves and pin curls, sometimes with beautiful silk scarfs tied around the head or a lovely cloche hat. Jazz has also come to Downton Abbey this season and we see brightly colored fabrics and lowered waistlines capturing the quintessential 1920’s style.

Once again the Maryland Historical Society created an amazing event, this time it was for the opening of the Costumes of Downton Abbey exhibit housed at the fantastic Winterthur Estate in Delaware. I went with my dear friend Cheryl and my business partner Rachel and her husband Tim. There were 42 guests in all, and we loaded a big tour bus at 9:00 am to head out to the Hotel duPont for a lovely brunch. Then we were off to Winterthur for an exclusive tour of the exhibit and then a tour of the house and estate. It was a long and wonderful day.

I of course wanted to dress for the occasion, I chose a 1920’s inspired outfit. It was quite cold so I was so happy to be able to wear my new butterscotch velvet coat. Once again I was “overdressed” for the occasion, however I was not the only one. Cheryl and Rachel both looked wonderful. I was asked a few times if I worked at the exhibit and one lovely lady on the bus asked if I was hired to attend so people could take photos with me. I thought that was funny and would have gladly taken that job if offered.

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Butterscotch Velvet Coat ~ Victorian Trading Company
Front Tie Sweater in deep rose ~ Myrtlewood purchased at Modcloth
Maroon Skirt ~ Lands End
Cloche Hat ~ Hats in the Belfry
Cream Gloves ~ Pinup Girl Clothing
Shoes ~ Bait Footware purchased at Modcloth

So our first stop was at the Hotel Du Pont for a champagne luncheon in the historic Green Room. The hotel lobby and restaurant were so beautiful, I could have spent hours taking photos of all the amazing woodwork carvings and the ceilings.

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And I even get my very own room at the Hotel!

And I even get my very own room at the Hotel!

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We had a great lunch in the historic and amazingly beautiful Green Room.

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After our lunch we loaded back onto the bus and headed down the road to the Winterthur Estate for the Costumes of Downton Abbey exhibit. This exhibit will be held until January 4, 2015 so if you have a chance I highly recommend seeing it. I would love to go back in the Spring/Summer and spend more time in the Winterthur gardens as well, it really is a beautiful estate.

**Fun fact** All of the mannequins were carved out of a special foam, and are of the correct size, shape and height of each of the actors/characters to showcase the costumes the best.

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Mrs. Hughes’ dress. The check detail and lace on the bodice is wonderful. And I adore those keys on the chains hanging off her belt.

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Thomas’s livery. The buttons are the Crawley family crest. Sorry I couldn’t get a closer shot.

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Lady Edith’s Wedding

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Lady Mary's dress for Lady Edith's wedding

Lady Mary’s dress for Lady Edith’s wedding

Lady Sybil's dress for Lady Edith's wedding

Lady Sybil’s dress for Lady Edith’s wedding

Daisy the kitchen maid

Daisy the kitchen maid

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Of course Rachel and I had to have a photo with Carson.

Of course Rachel and I had to have a photo with Carson.

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