The Dressmaker Exhibition at Ripponlea House & Garden

April 23, 2016

Brought to you by Nuffnang and National Trust Victoria

The Dressmaker Exhibition

The Dressmaker Exhibition

On Thursday night, I was lucky enough to be invited to the launch party for The Dressmaker Exhibition at Ripponlea House & Garden. Set against the stunning backdrop of Ripponlea House, The Dressmaker Exhibition transports you back to Dungatar in the 1950s as you journey through the glamorous, parisian-style costumes worn by the actors who starred in The Dressmaker film: Kate Winslet, Hugo Weaving and Liam Hemsworth, just to name a few!

The National Trust of Victoria have put on an amazing exhibition which showcases the high level of detail that went into creating the gorgeous, 1950s Parisian-style ensembles. The launch party began with a guided tour through Ripponlea House by the costume designer, Marion Boyce, and author of The Dressmaker novel, Rosalie Ham. Rosalie and Marion were really lovely and happy to answer any questions the group had about where they sourced their creative inspiration for bringing this story from page to screen.

The garments were elegantly modelled on high-heeled mannequins and each room consisted a different set of character’s couture; every piece of clothing was gorgeously detailed and perfectly accessorised, it was like walking through an art gallery turned fashion show. After the tour, I took some time wander through each room and look at the costumes up close; the hat room in particular was just fascinating!

I’ve shared some of my absolute favourite shots from the night below:



The Dressmaker Exhibition






Marion and Rosalie were kind enough to answer any questions we had about designing the film’s costumes and the book that inspired the film. I asked Marion, “As the costume designer, is there a particular costume you’re most attached to?” She answered, “I’m attached to all of them in different ways, but I’m most fond of the black dress with the white, floating cape because it’s just so elegant.” She’s right, it was pretty darn spectacular.


Rosalie Ham, author of The Dressmaker, spoke to us about what inspired her to write the novel and how she is extremely pleased with how her characters were acted and brought to life on screen. Ripponlea House & Gardens is the perfect place for this exhibition to be set because its elegant architecture and historical significance (think Great Gatsby) is the perfect backdrop for an exhibition which makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time to a 1950’s glam vortex. We ended the night with a glass of bubbles in the Ripponlea House ballroom – a very glam send off, I must say.


I encourage everyone in Melbourne to check out the Dressmaker Exhibition at Ripponlea House & Gardens, especially if you’re a fan of The Dressmaker film or novel! The exhibition runs from the 22nd of April – 31st of July before it heads to Adelaide. For all the details, head to the Dressmaker Exhibition Website.

If you’d like to see more of what I got up to on the day of the exhibition, check out my daily vlog!

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1 Comment

  • Reply VLOG #1 - Lillytales April 24, 2016 at 9:02 am

    […] Welcome to my first ever daily vlog! This is the day I spent being spoiled with coffee, working on blog posts and attending the launch party for The Dressmaker Exhibition at the beautiful Ripponlea House & Garden Estate. I’ve written a full blog post about The Dressmaker Exhibition so if you’d like to read more about it, click here. […]

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