Nautical motifs are a perennial on contemporary catwalks, from regimental naval glamour to the square sailor collar. But how did these elements of men’s uniform — created as a spectacular display of sartorial power and military might — cross into women’s dress, and how did their meanings change with this transition? The museum’s fashion director Amber Butchart will be discussing all things sailor style from the development of naval uniform to its appropriation into womenswear, to coincide with the release of her latest book Nautical Chic: the history of high style on the high seas.
Dr Matt Lodder is an Art Historian at the University of Essex who specialises in the history of tattooing as an artistic practice. His research challenges preconceptions of body modification and uncovers little-known histories of the practice in Victorian Britain and beyond. In this talk, ‘Not Just For Sailors,’ Matt will be exploring the history of tattoos in high society and the deep roots of a very familiar cliché.