Aristocracy Archive at The Wallace Collection

My friend (and costumier) Elektra and I made a photo opportunity installation at The Wallace Collection last Friday and we now finally have the pictures courtesy of Sophie Ansell, who was slaving away taking pictures of all of the people that came through the museum.

The theme of the night was “cultural collecting” so our idea was that no one is allowed to add or take away from The Wallace Collection but we thought we’d break the rules and help people join the galleries for one night only.

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My Mermaid Manifestation

After hours of labouring over a mermaid tail- I have the beginnnings of my mermaid. I had to cut all of the scales individually out of latex, clean them and glue them on to the skirt. It has taken an eternity and a serious amount of Christmas T.V.

I am going to run you through it…


After cutting out all the scales I cleaned them and laid them out to dry.


I made a bra top first as a kind of tester- which was way easier than the skirt because it wasn’t on stretch fabric. I just covered a multi-way, flesh coloured bra.


The pencil skirt base is made from two layers of power mesh layed out with the weave in opposite directions, with a zip up the back.Then it is covered in copydex stripes to stick the scales to. This is the first line of scales.


I glued the scales in vertical lines darker to lighter and bigger to smaller with the centre panel having the largest palest scales.


So Close!

And the finished result….


Ok, it’s not the best photograph but… I’m pretty pleased with it. It took a bashing at the party, a few scales definitely fell off and it was a nightmare to go to the loo in but hey, it’s all a learning curve.