The Evolution of Underwear


Matilda Battersby
Thursday 11 June 2009 14:07 BST

From girdles to gussets, anti-cellulite knickers and push-up bras, an exhibition celebrating the history of women’s underwear opens tomorrow at London’s Fashion and Textile Museum.

Featuring designs by Elle Macpherson, Stella McCartney, Christian Dior and Calvin Klein, the exhibition explores the evolution of bras and knickers from corsets and stays over the last hundred years.

Curator Alison McCann has selected pieces from the risqué to the radical, the practical and the extremely impractical and displayed them in a way which cleverly recreates the feel of the feminine boudoir.

“Developments in underwear have moved with the social and economic times and this exhibition charts how female underwear has evolved over the past century from a functional item to a thing of beauty,” McCann said.

Elle Macpherson, who opened a preview of the exhibition today, said "Designing lingerie has been my passion for the last twenty years and I was delighted when the Fashion and Textile Museum approached me to collaborate [on this]."

The exhibition runs from Friday 12 June to Sunday 27 September and costs £6.50 for adults, £3.50 for students and is free to concessions.

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