7th November 2008 at 00:00

An exhibition celebrating the work of one of Britain's most revered fashion designers aims to give senior secondary and higher education students hands-on lessons in how to create a timeless clothes collection, as well as an insight into running a fashion business.

Jean Muir: A Fashion Icon opens in Edinburgh today at the National Museum of Scotland, and draws on the Jean Muir archive, a collection of more than 18,000 items donated to NMS after the designer's death at the age of 67. Known for her technical expertise and strict attention to detail, she first came to prominence in the 1960s as part of the British design revolution. While Biba and other labels focused on cheap, disposable garments, Muir built her reputation on classic style and elegance and her celebrity customers included Joanna Lumley, Lauren Bacall, Barbra Streisand and Judy Dench.

The exhibition, which runs into March, features 30 garments and accessories as well as sketches, pattern pieces and fabric samples. Additional material, such as photographs and fashion show invitations, lets visitors explore the business and promotional side of the label.

A private view for teachers and lecturers is being held next Friday afternoon from 4-6pm. Later this month and in January, sessions for senior pupils will be held at the museum, where they will work with fashion designer Iona Crawford on the development of a Jean Muir-inspired collection.

Fashion students from Edinburgh College of Art will also be using the exhibition for a design project.

Other activities include a January weekend of fashion photography workshops, a November study day and paper doll making.


E: P.Robertson@nms.ac.uk.

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