Underpinnings of Inspiration

I’m the first to admit that I’ve been a bit quiet on the underwear blogging front so far this year. It’s not that I haven’t been doing lots of underwear-related things though – far from it! – I just haven’t had time to write about them yet. Following The Underpinnings Museum‘s successful Kickstarter campaign, a three day photoshoot was planned to capture the details of some of the huge collection of garments on our fab new crowd-funded mannequins. The amazing Tigz Rice was behind the camera, Karolina was the shoot manager and I got to assist on day one. Of course, I updated everyone throughout the day via Twitter.


When we took a short break from mounting and shooting the garments, Karolina suggested that we do a quick Facebook Live video for some behind-the-scenes pants joy (sounds much ruder than it actually is).


The new period-appropriate mannequins looked great and meant that we could display a far greater range of garments than we did in the initial mini-shoot. It’s not just about padding a modern one in the right places – some of these beautiful objects just wouldn’t have fit on at all. Twenty-first century mannequins are completely the wrong shape for many nineteenth and twentieth century garments and, of course, they don’t squish like human bodies do.


We made sure to shoot lots of bras, ready for the next exhibition too. I’m currently putting it together with Karolina, so watch this space for more details. In the meantime, The Underpinnings Museum’s launch exhibition is still up on the home page for you to enjoy.

We mounted and shot a total of 43 garments on day one. Karolina and Tigz went on to shoot 68 objects on day 2, and another 68 on day 3 – clearly they are more productive without me! – which is a total of 179 beautiful things that we will be able to share with you, and a massive 150GB of photos shot over the three days! (You can get some more sneak previews on Twitter and Instagram.) Karolina has made the image selections now and Tigz has started the mammoth job of editing. Next up is the task of putting together the object pages on the site, writing captions, and creating the layout of the new exhibition page too. That’s a lot of work going on behind the scenes!

On top of this, I gave a guest lecture to MA Fashion Cultures students at London College of Fashion, UAL, about my underwear research, and The Underpinnings Museum team are working with four groups of MA students at the same institution as part of their cross-course collaborative unit. I’m looking forward to sharing more information on this exciting project soon. It’s been a busy start to 2017!

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Pique Lingerie, photography by Maria Vaorin