Fashion and Textiles at Dreweatts Bristol

Bristol -Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions in Bristol are holding the largest specialist Textiles sale that the West Country has seen in several years, which includes a substantial privately owned collection of museum quality costume, accessories, textiles and haberdashery. The collection spans over a century of fashion and design, with both civilian and rare military costume which will appeal to specialist collectors, designers, and the international trade in rare costume. The auction will be held at the auctioneers Bristol saleroom on Thursday 19th March 2015.

Parts of the collection have appeared in television and film productions, and have been worn by the elegant casts of Agatha Christie's tales set in the 1930s, from Miss Marple's smart suits and sensible shoes to the flamboyant attire of the star cast in Evil under the Sun. These items include swimwear for both men and women, alongside decadent evening dresses, silver lame dancing shoes, elegant silk, or metallic woven evening shawls.

The 1940s part of the collection, the decade of wartime and utility wear, offers Women's Voluntary Service uniforms, a Doctor's white coat with the CC41 Utility label, American servicemen's uniforms as well as their sweetheart pins, and other military costume. Civilian costume during the 40s was all about austerity and economy and has a distinctive cut, quality and a pared down elegance. Much of the underwear, stockings and shoes in the sale from this period have their CC41 Utility stamps or labels, and are in original condition after years of careful storage.

Fashion from the 1950s includes prom dresses and brocade ball gowns, fur wraps and jackets, and a selection of classic 1950s bead and sequin evening bags.

The latter part of the 20th century is represented too, with a strong section of designer costume by Hermes, Chanel, Christian Dior, Gucci, Ralph Lauren and Moschino.

Chinese textiles have achieved high prices at auction in recent years and this auction will include a good collection of Chinese robes, jackets and textiles, many of which are family pieces that have been handed down through the generations.


Dreweatts & Bloomsbury Auctions are a UK 'top 5' auctioneer of fine art and collectibles. As part of Stanley Gibbons we are the only UK stock-exchange listed firm of auctioneers and occupy the same stable as coin specialists Baldwin's, and Frasers Autograph's. Established in 1759, we have the broadest and most regular calendar of specialist catalogued sales in the industry, numbering over 150 per annum, and provide vendors and buyers alike access to market-leading specialist advice in any number of collecting fields. We operate from salerooms in Donnington Priory (near Newbury), London's Mayfair, Bristol and Godalming.

Bristol - 4th March 2015