Staffordshire Arts and Museum image
  Costume exibition image  

What should you wear for a night out on the town? Is it formal or fun? Are you out with friends or out to impress? This exhibition uses evening wear to explore our changes in attitude towards dressing up and going out.

The vital decision of what to wear on a night out has always been important. In the first half of the 20th century this decision was governed by strict social conventions. A specific style of dress was required for every occasion.

In the 1950s a new culture emerged, based around the views, music and fashions of young people. Since then dressing up to go out has become a less formal affair. Younger people have had more money to spend and more choice and freedom about where they socialise, whether it is a pub, a club, the cinema or an informal dinner with friends. Fashion has reflected these changes.

Clothes have been used to express individuality in a much greater way than ever before. Cheap, fun and fashionable clothes are readily available on the high street. Today fashions are diverse and are not restricted by social etiquette. Deciding what to wear is more stressful than ever!

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