I have mentioned Downton Abbey here on my blog quite a few times before, I just love that series! So it was with great excitement I first heard the news that the Hallwyl Museum in Stockholm would be putting on an exhibition with dresses from it!
The Hallwyl Museum (Hallwylska Museet) is, for those who haven’t been to Stockholm and visited it, a turn of the century (last century that is, so end of 1800s beginning of 1900s) house which has been turned into a museum. I say house, but it’s more like a little palace right in the center of Stockholm.
After countless visitors to the museum had mentioned how much it the place reminded them of Downton Abbey (yes, the series have been a massive hit here in Sweden too!) the museum decided to investigate the possibility of having an exhibition with costumes from Downton. And it was. The Hallwyl Museum were the first ones to exhibit any costumes from the series outside of the UK!
As I said, hearing all this was very exciting to me. And just before Christmas we had a few errands to do in Stockholm and mum and I took that opportunity to take a look at this exhibition. It was so much better than even I had expected!
Put on display in those gorgeous rooms were some of the beautiful costumes I recognise so well from the series (these were all from season one), and even though I have always loved them on screen seeing them up close in real life they were even more amazing! There were so many beautiful details that you just don’t see on TV, and the fabrics and materials used were simply to die for! I was positively bouncing around with a massive smile on my face, struggling to breathe at times because of the excitement! And when just before we were leaving they put on the theme music from the series on loud speakers in the room the excitement was almost too much to bear!
To my astonishment and delight I found out that you were allowed to take pictures! And not only that, there was no glass between you and the dresses! Just a little rope that you very easily could stretch over (not that I touched any of the costumes.. of course not! *cough…) I had not expected that, so all I had with me was my phone which doesn’t have a particularly good camera. For this reason, and also just because it was all just so fantastic, I decided I would have to go back again while the exhibition was still on for another visit.
So two days ago we went back again. This time I was armed with a slightly better camera and literally took hundreds of photos. I won’t put you through all of them, but I have chosen some. So, without further ado here are the pictures!
Mrs Crawley, Lady Mary and Lady Sybil
Lady Mary, Lady Sybil and Lady Edith
Lady Sybil’s GORGEOUS jacket!! I soo badly want this one!
The Dowager Countess (and Lord Grantham in the background. There were none of the men’s costumes at the exhibition, as those were still being used for filming)
Beautiful room, and the combination of pretty dresses AND a grand piano is a winner in my eyes!
Stunning gown for Lady Mary (this one had previously been used in Finding Neverland apparently)
Another one of Lady Mary’s
This one is not from the series but is an original belonging to the museum. It’s a beautiful dress but what fascinates me most about this one is the extremely tiny waist! The lady who wore this one had probably been used to wearing a corset since she was a very young girl, none of the actresses have. That’s why none of them came even close to a waist like this!
Another view of the same dresses. I just love the back of the greenish one!
Three more stunning evening gowns, Lady Sybil, Lady Edith and Lady Grantham’s
Lady Edith and Lady Sybil
Lady Edith. I think this one is just so pretty!
Beautiful sparkly back detail of Lady Grantham’s dress
The same three dresses again from another angle
Garden party dresses
Lady Mary. I really think I need this dress for summer!
Once again Lady Mary
The Dowager Countess
This was my standard pose for most of the day
See how close you could get!!
That was quite a few pictures I know, even if it was still only a tiny portion of all the ones I took! However I know I am far from the only one who loves these dresses so I hope you enjoyed seeing these!
Unfortunately the last day of the exhibition was yesterday. I am now living on the hope that they decide to do it again for season 2,3 and in due time 4. Who knows if they will, but I certainly hope so! And I also think I have to go back to the Hallwyl Museum soon again for another visit, there is alot more to see than the Downton dresses there, but I confess I mostly had time to focus on those when I was there these two times… But if you’re ever in Stockholm it is definitely a place that is worth a visit!