VISITING DOWNTON ABBEY COSTUMES AT AN "ENGLISH" COUNTRY HOUSE IN WISCONSIN

Victoria here, spending a hot and humid afternoon at this charming exhibition of costumes from the popular series Downton Abbey.

Huge Poster announcing the Exhibition

The Paines built their house to resemble a Jacobean English Manor.

There was a healthy crowd at the Paine, probably among their largest.  Most of the costumes were show in the rooms as illustrated in the pictures below, taken from various websites, as they allowed no interior photography.


One of Lady Mary's riding habits, with her sidesaddle, in the gallery.

The gallery during taping of "Sewing With Nancy," a Wisconsin Public Television program; you can enjoy three six-minute segments.  Click here for Daytime Wear; click here for Aristocratic Wear; and click here for Active Wear. 

The Gallery was filled with costumes, all interesting, from the Edwardian through the WWI periods.  The other costumes were shown in rooms of the house, a perfect setting. A few of the costumes were original antiques, some were fashioned with period fabrics and/or from period garments, and some were made with appropriate natural fabrics from scratch.


Evening Wear in the Dining Room, with a Footman in the background


In one of the upstairs sitting rooms, the gowns worn in the 1925 scene of the Royal Drawing ?Room Presentation; Lady Rose on the left, Countess Grantham in grey on the right.

Evening Wear in the Great Room; 
the Dowager Countess wore the gown second from the left.

The Countess of Grantham's outfit for Edith's wedding, as shown at Biltmore

A beautifully detailed linen suit from the Edwardian period.

In all, 36 costumes are seen from DA's first four seasons, all made by Cosprop Ltd. with under the sponsorship of the program producers and local underwriters.

Even though it was unusually hot for Wisconsin, We wandered a bit in the garden, only slightly wilted by the heat. Both the blooms and the people! I snapped a few photos of the house and grounds.

The kitchen entrance

across the lawns to the coach house

the wilderness


The lily pool 

Statuary in the Garden, with the Coach House in the background

The house from the shade of the garden


I regret that I waited so late in the Wisconsin showing of this exhibition as I would have preferred to see it several times and now I won't have time to go back before it ends on September 20, 2015. It had previously been shown at Winterthur in Delaware and at the Biltmore Mansion in North Carolina. Below is the upcoming schedule, so if there is a venue near you, you can share in the opportunity.

To see an account of the exhibition at Biltmore, click here.

Exhibition Tour Schedule
Oshkosh, Wis.* Paine Art Center and Gardens   June-September 2015
Richmond, Va. Virginia Historical Society Oct. 2015-Jan. 2016
Chicago, Ill. The Richard H. Driehaus Museum  February-May 2016
Cincinnati, Ohio Taft Museum of Art July-September 2016
South Bend, Ind.The History MuseumOct. 2016-Jan. 2017
Anaheim, Calif.Muzeo Museum and Cultural CenterFebruary-May 2017
Nashville, Tenn.Cheekwood Art & GardensJune-September 2017
St. Augustine, Fla.The Lightner MuseumOct. 2017-Jan. 2018