Don’t miss seeing 36 dazzling costumes, film stills, and accessories from the British hit drama Downton Abbey®.

Dressing Downton: Changing Fashion for Changing Times
July 2–September 25, 2016

One of the most widely watched television dramas in the world, Downton Abbey®, has won numerous awards, including several for its outstanding costumes. Set on a sprawling English country estate, the series follows the lives of the aristocratic Crawley family and their servants, all fittingly dressed for the period.

Through 36 dazzling costumes, as well as accessories and film stills, Dressing Downton: Changing Fashion for Changing Times explores British fashion between 1912 and the early 1920s, a period of great change bookended by the sinking of the Titanic and the dawn of the Jazz Age. World War I (1914–1918) had a lasting effect on people’s lives and on what they wore. The exhibition shows the progression of women’s fashion, from figure-altering corsets and bustles to straighter profiles and shorter skirts. For men, the de rigueur white tie and tails for dinner gave way to the more relaxed dinner jacket with black tie.

On Downton Abbey®, as in history, clothing reveals important information about evolving social and economic classes. Many of the costumes use original fabrics and embellishments from the early 20th century, while others were recreated from old photographs, paintings, patterns, and magazine pictures.

Follow your favorite characters, both upstairs and down; walk through a costume chronicle of the period; and feast your eyes on stunning costumes and glittering jewelry.

Exhibition produced by Exhibits Development Group in cooperation with Cosprop Ltd., London. Downton™ and Downton Abbey®. ©2016 Carnival Film & Television Limited. A Carnival Films/Masterpiece Co-Production. All Rights Reserved.

Film still images ©Carnival Films

Exhibition Support
Haute Couture Sponsor

Additional financial support provided by The H.B, E.W. and F.R. Luther Charitable Foundation, Fifth Third Bank and Narley L. Haley, Co-Trustees; The Sutphin Family Foundation; John Hauck Foundation, Fifth Third Bank, John W. Hauck, and Narley L. Haley, Co-Trustees; The Frank J. Kloenne and Jacqueline Dawson Kloenne Foundation, Fifth Third Bank and Narley L. Haley, Co-Trustees; and Joel McCray and the Robert S. Duncanson Society.

Taft Museum of Art

The Taft Museum of Art is one of the finest small art museums in America. A National Historic Landmark built in 1820, the Taft is home to a world-class art collection that includes European and American master paintings, Chinese porcelains, and European decorative arts.


Exhibition Support Generously
Provided By

Ellen and George Rieveschl Endowment
Warrington Exhibition Endowment
Chellgren Family Endowment

Season Funder

Operating Support

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