Museum of Bags and Purses in Amsterdam

Herengracht 573, 1017 CD Amsterdam
Opening hours: 3.50-12.50 EUR
Tickets: Open every day! Monday-Sunday 10:00-17:00
Click here for more information!

About the founders
During a visit to England one antique bag took the heart and constant attention of Hendrikje and Heinz Ivo. Throughout the years they collected 5000 bags and first had
an exhibition at their home in Amstelveen in 1996. The collection moved to its current place, a house that is part of UNESCO’s World Heritage in 2007. Their daughter, Sigrid Ivo is the director of the museum and the museum is often mentioned as one of the best fashion related ones on Earth.

The collection
The exhibition starts with the oldest bags from the 5th century and by explaining the methods how bags were made and used in the past centuries. Did you know people started making bags back then because their clothes didn’t have any pockets? It moves through time, materials and fashion as well until we reach our current days.
Let me just mention of couple of names from the haute couture collection: Chanel, Dolce&Gabbana, Yves Saint Laurent, Judith Leiber, DKNY, Gucci, Hermés, Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton.
It also contains bags that used to belong to celebrities: the bag Madonna wore to Evita’s premiere, Sophia Loren’s, Julia Robert’s and Lady Gaga’s bag, Salvador Dalí’s wife, Gala Dalí’s bag, Hillary Clinton’s, Margaret Thatcher’s and some of royal families.

The museum shop 
If you take a look at Tripadvisor and other sources you will find that this museum shop has been named the best one in Amsterdam. But why is it so special compared to the one in the Van Gogh Museum for example? Because it is impossible not to find the perfect bag there for yourself. This September the newest collection of Valentino was also on sale. Hard to be strong when so much useful (!!) beauty is surrounding you…
Anyway, you can also take a look back at the bags by buying a book containing stories and photos of the whole collection.

During the visit you can design a handbag for yourself. Here is the one I made while feeling very creative and empowered standing next to a red Chanel bag. Am I a born designer or what?!

My bag

 

 

Fashion history I.: Medieval noble dresses

As I was walking around in the Castle of Siklós, I couldn’t help but notice the amazing dresses that were displayed on wax statues everywhere. Those big skirts made me think how lazily we are dressing ourselves these days compared to that.

What did I learn from the exhibition?
Velvet, baize, linen, silk, lace and brocade were the most common materials for noble clothes.
There was no difference in the colour palette of men’s and women’s clothing. Green, yellow and red were the most populatar colours.
All of women’s dresses had a massive puckered skirt and the sleeves of the upper gament were getting wider from the elbow to the wrist.
The decorating elements on women’s clothing in general were lace, embroidery and pearls.
Decorated headpieces made the outfit complete. Only maidens could walk in the town with uncovered hair.
Jewelry were made of gold, silver and gemstones.
Men wore tight trousers with shirt and a coat on top of that.
The coat’s margin was covered with some kind of fur (such as marten, sable or ermine).
The accesories of men were the decorated buttons on their jacket.

Madame Tussauds Vienna

5. Reisenradplatz, 1020 Wien
Opening hours: Open every day! 10:00-20:00
Tickets: 13.8-30 EUR
Click here  for more information!

Who was Madame Tussaud?
Anna Maria Tussaud was an artist, who made her sculptures from wax in the 18th century. She was born in France, but then lived most of her life in Switzerland and England. She founded her first exhibition on Baker Street, London. Although she lived 200 years ago, the brand she established is more popular than ever. Madame Tussauds museums can be found on 4 continents: Europe, Asia, America and Australia.

I visited the one in Vienna, and it was a superb experience! The ticket is really pricey, but it’s worth it. You can look into the eyes of historical figures (Sissi, Maria Theresia and Napoleon), politicians (Queen Elizabeth II, the Dalai Lama and Barack Obama), celebrities (Leonardo DiCaprio, Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie), musicians (Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and Michael Jackson) and artists (Beethoven, Hundertwasser and Klimt).

Here are my favourite sculptures from Madame Tussauds Vienna: