The Exhibition: Charlotte Fifth Avenue Gowns & The House of Elegance

The Exhibition: Charlotte Fifth Avenue Gowns & The House of Elegance

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Posted 2024-02-02 by Nadine Cresswell-Myattfollow

Sat 09 Mar 2024 - Sun 10 Mar 2024



In the 1950s and 1960s, Melbourne fashion designer Charlotte Blau sold her stunning creations to prestigious US stores such as New York's Saks Fifth Avenue. Her dresses were prized by Melbourne society belles and debutants.

Charlotte had trained in Germany as an architect with the Bauhaus, a famous avant-garde art school in Weimar. But in Australia, her architecture degree was not recognised, so began her life as a dressmaker and designer.



Blau and her husband, Willy ran the fashion label, Charlotte Fifth Avenue Gown, from Oliver Lane, in Melbourne's Flinders Lane fashion district selling to Georges and Myer. She won Gown of the Year in 1965.

Fashion historian Tom McEvoy has been collecting her frocks as he loves her architectural sense of structure. She also used applique flowers and stunning lace on her garments.



The historic mansion Villa Alba, is hosting the World's largest collection of garments from two of Australia's greatest mid-century fashion houses including Charlotte Fifth Avenue Gown on March 2. Sadly this event has proved so popular it is sold out.

But on the following Saturday, the weekend beginning March 9, you can see exhibits curated by Tom McEvoy. The interactive experience showcases the Darlington Swans who will glide throughout the Mansion dressed in select pieces from the archives.



Within the timeless beauty of the Villa Alba, you'll get a hands-on experience exploring these archival garments along with hearing vibrant stories of the fashion past.

This event will never be repeated, as a selection of garments will be up for sale for those who want to own an incredible piece of Australian fashion history.

Tickets cost $25

Tickets at Eventbrite.

Villa Alba Museum
44 Walmer Street Kew, VIC 3101
Sessions run for 1 hour 30 minutes

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276764 - 2024-02-01 10:53:57

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