by - August 10, 2014

I've got a few weaknesses in life. Most of them evolve around fashion. Not fashion in the sense of "what's hot right now" (although, maybe a bit), but more fashion in the sense of clothes, shoes, hats etc I like and have a weakness for (hence the first part of this introduction). These shoes for instance.

These shoes just came through the mail (as is the following item, but we'll stay with the shoes for now). They are distinctively black with a big plateau sole. I've got a lot of similar (distinctively speaking, naturally) shoes. Yet, when I see one crossing my way, I can't help then to be lured to them. Aren't they just amazing?! I've ordered them in the sale at the beginning (the 16th to be precise) of June from H&M. Now I know what you're thinking, "That's impossible! You said that they'd just arrived through the mail... are you lying to us???". I am not lying to you, my dearest, they literally just came through the mail, just look at the mess beside my bed...

Well... it did just came through the mail, yesterday afternoon, when I started writing this post. So I'm sorta lying but I'm sorta not. Carry on.

I must confess, I'd totally forgotten I'd ordered them. But I mean, really H&M? It's taken you about 2 months to bring me my shoes that were on sale? What? Did you first have to make them or something?? Oh well, you've been excused, because they are darn cute! (darn:

1. Mend (knitted material or a hole in this) by weaving yarn across the hole with a needle.
"I don't expect you to darn my socks"
2. A place in a garment that has been darned.
"Near evening in the cool blue mountains, I would sit and smoke my pipe, surveying the exquisite landscape all around, forest dotted here and there with the patches of beautiful vegetable gardens like darns in an old garment."
Thanks Google translate.)

This sort of brings us to another "weakness" of mine (one might say weakness, others might say AMAZINGNESS). My mum had ordered this book some time ago (again. But it had to come from America or something, so again excused for the waiting time *sigh*). It's one of the most amazing books I've ever layed my eyes upon-- this said by a girl who's layed her eyes upon a lot of amazing books. It's filled with some of the highlights (over 80) from the last 30 or so years from Vogue Knitting AND *exciting part* it comes with pattern descriptions *confetti* (confetti: small pieces of coloured paper thrown during a celebration such as a wedding. "Features were thrown at us like confetti at a western wedding."). I'd definitely recommend everyone who loves old frolics and knitting to get this book, "every knitter will find something to love within these pages", and it'll make you shriek in a good way (I sure did! On page 269 I've already spotted a pattern for a Chanel inspired knit suit *shrieks*).

Without intermission I'd like to lead y'all to another combined weakness: museums and textiles. So what else was there to do than to go to the TextielMuseum in Tilburg? Nothing, is the right answer. Nothing at all. Thus we went. Obviously. 

The museum wasn't what I'd expected it to be, but it was more than I'd expected it to be. I'd read in a magazine about their temporary exhibition called Artist Textiles: Picasso to Warhol (still there until the 14th of September) and thought it was worth the long car journey there. It was easy to persuade my mother. I only had to drop the word textile and she was in. My dad had no say in his choice of coming or not. We needed a driver. My sister on the other hand isn't that keen on textiles or museums -the barbarian- and was left at home to be in charge of the dog. Atleast, that's what we've told her. The dog had other plans. Plans of world domination that is mwhahahhahahaha. No. jk. 

In words this exhibition is about the story of how art becomes something for everyone. This by the means of mass-production, with main focus upon textiles (duh). Hereby trying to equalize or surpass the difference between fine and applied art. This all mainly in regards to the change in attitude towards art after the world war(s). America took the lead, naturally, because Europe was destroyed and upon this day has never been the same. Both society as art wise (hereby saying that art plays a big part in society, and society plays a big part in art (if not are equal to eachother)). 

To be part of the American lifestyle, you had to be modern. As many art/history books will tell ya, everything went quite fast when the clock struck 1900 and so on (although, I don't think that a clock can struck a year... maybe a calendar. But a calendar doesn't really struck. Calenders move forwards, I think. Oh well, y'all get what I mean. The "periods" of time since 1900 has multiplied if not quantified a lot more than before that point of time). Best example to get you thinking American modern is naturally Andy Warhol (A happy, a bit belated, birthday to you Andy!). 

The exhibition shows "an important and comprehensive overview of artist textiles from Great Britain and the United States produced between 1910 and approximately 1975." The whole thing has been organised by the Fashion and Textile Museum London (where there'll be an exhibition called KNITWEAR Chanel to Westwood from the 19th of September 2014 till the 18th of January 2015 and naturally many other things I guess (oh! I want to go there please!)).

I've never seen these Picasso's before:

And who do I see there hiding in the corner? Is that you Andy?

The inevitable happened, me posing with Andy's Happy Bug Day/Happy Butterfly Day. Which happen to be, if you believe what they've typed on the card beside it, Andy's favourite designs of the 1950s. Yay.

I myself didn't really saw the words morphed back into the exhibition. Twas more looking at the "prettiness" or the "art" that lays behind (or maybe even infront) of the fabric and how the real art lays in the (handmade) fabrication of textile than the actual artistic revolution to provide art or see art as something available to all. But maybe that is, theorizing here, because it's been held within the boundaries of the walls it wants to surpass (ya know, the elite image of museums and shizzle). 

However, I think some walls might've been knocked down thanks to the socalled "textiellab" (I've felt the urge to translate textiel with textile, but since that means that I'll have to swap the e and l, I think I don't have to bother. Just imagine that I've made a typo or something). Within the textiellab they produce works solidly in the name of experimenting and helping out the arts. As a visitor you can just walk around the area and look at looms, lasers and knitting machines (funny story: A man who worked there asked us if we knew how a knitting machine works. "Yes", my mother said full of confidence, "my mother used to have a knitting machine at home". The man looks bdazzled and just carries on, as if not hearing my mothers comment, "Here. I'll show you how a knitting machine works" and begins to explain how a knitting machine works. Weird. Also, there was a knitting machine that could made a glove within 3 minutes. Quite impressive. Although I was most impressed by the laser. You just see a little flame from nowhere go into patterns and ta-da, you've got yourself all kinds of different pieces. They were busy cutting parts for dresses for Heineken that'll be worn at some event in London or something... So Londoners, keep your eyes peeling out for that).

The whole experience was very inspiring and weirdly motivating. There's a lot to see. Like for instance the permanent exhibition The Woollen Blanket Factory 1900-1940. The museum is btw stationed in an old factory and lots of those features they've kept. Which is 1) very endearing and impressive and 2) scary as... very.. stairs... whaa! (lift not better. Still had to go with the stairs. They had holes in them. I was wearing black shoes with a big plateau sole. Not a good shoe choice in this situation. My father had to practically carry me downstairs. I've survived. Barely).

Here's an action photo my dad took when we elegantly derived from the stairs. Thanks, dad:

Upstairs they've made room for Body Jewels (there until the 29th of March 2015) which focuses upon Dutch design and the "outbreak" of jewelry as seen as 'mere jewelry'. And, on top of that, breaking free from the association of it being more applied art than fine art AND more being "woman's work" than, well, something that carries "far less weight" according prejudices and value judgements and so on and so on).

Although this part was probably the most inspiring (don't get me wrong. I definitely need an Andy Warhol dress with lipstick on it, or that very first white dress with black figures by Dior, in my life. Otherwise I cant function properly...), I don't have many words to describe it. Again, I don't really see the intentions they've put down in words into the actual exhibition. But, it was game strong in its design and thereby its simplicity or better said severity. The objects were intertwined harmoniously with eachother, yet all stood strong on their own.

Our visit ended at the museumshop where I got from my lovely parents a book called Eco Fashion by Sass Brown and I'm really happy with it! I haven't read a word of it yet, but the pictures look very impressive...

The main downside of museumshops is that they're always very expensive. It's just something they can't seem to do right. I naturally don't despise all the pricey stuff, but there seems to be no middle way. You can get a really expensive book or you can get a postcard of paintings they don't even have hanging in the museum (am I the only one who finds that weird? I mean, why would I sell postcards with stuff I don't even own. That's bad managing. And most of the museums are guilty of it. Something as big and grand as the Rijksmuseum sells postcards of pictures their neighbours of the Van Gogh Museum owns and visa versa. It's ludicrous!). Or you could just not get anything, but what's the fun in that?!


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  1. the exhibit looks amazing, thank you for sharing your experience there.
    xx http://1finedai.blogspot.com/