Collection Themes

Have you ever wondered what Victorian women wore for cycling or playing tennis? Can you guess the connection between a wetsuit and a 1980s clubbing outfit? Find the answers in themes below.

Throughout the above Costume Themes you will encounter various Related Themes that explain more about particular aspects of the collection. The usual way to browse these themes is by using the titles above, however you may also browse the Related Themes directly.

If you have any ideas of new themes you would like to see developed in the future, please use our Feedback Form. You can also search our collection by date, designer, object/garment type, etc to create your own themes.

The Gallery of Costume houses one of the largest collections of clothing and fashion accessories in Britain, containing over 20,000 items. The collection contains clothes worn by men, women and children from the 17th century to the present day. You can view many other items from the collection on-line by searching the collection database.