Fashion Journal – Reynolda House, Winston-Salem, NC

Posted by Lin:
I love your sketches Lizzie! This is inspiring me to go off and at least try to take random phone-photos of interesting garments on my travels.

What this collection reminds me of my favourite passage about attic clothes, in ‘the Horseman on the Roof’. The attic is a cool sanctuary for an Italian cavalier hiding in a cholera-ridden town:

‘Angelo felt an irresistable desire for another sight of that yellow translucent attic, guardian of old bits of stuff, polished wooden clubs, fleur-de-lis fire irons, parasols, skirts on wicker dummies, old hoods of shot taffeta, bookbindings, odd drawers, mother of pearl garlands, bouquets of orange blossom, fruits of an elegant and easy life laid to rest in honey.

The bodices, dresses, tuckers, bonnets, gloves, jackets, box coats, top hats, stocks, of three generations, hanging from pegs, festooned the walls. Tiny high-heeled shoes of satin, leather, velvet, slippers with silk tassels, hunting-boots, stood upon low pieces of furniture, not in the absurd rows of tidy footwear, but as if the feet had just left them; better still, as though shadowy feet still wore them…

…all this brought caresses as soothing to the heart as the caresses of the cat. Indeed, the cat was there, lying on an old quilt, and it called to Angelo, cooing like a dove, smooth and melancholy, like the very voice of the vanished world…

A scent of long slumbers, of bodies grown old in peace, of tender hearts, of incorruptible youth, of blue passion and of violet-water came from the fair loft.’

Wednesday, May 18th 2005 @ 1:07 AM
Posted by Lizzie Bramlett:
Thanks Lin! And what a beautiful passage. The collection is still in the attic. They made a special exhibition room in it just to show the clothing. The day I was there, I pretty much had the place to myself, as the stairs were steep and the entryway poorly marked.

I not only sketch in the journal, but also glue bits I find, such as postcards. You phone-photo idea seems like just the justification I need to upgrade my cell phone!

Lizzie
Wednesday, May 18th 2005 @ 4:14 PM

1 Comment

Filed under Journal, Museums

One response to “Fashion Journal – Reynolda House, Winston-Salem, NC

  1. Pingback: Reynolda House Museum of American Art | The Vintage Traveler

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