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Easton Pearson's fashion legacy inspires

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Museum of Brisbane hosts major exhibition, The Designers’ Guide: Easton Pearson Archive.

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The spotlight is again shining on internationally-acclaimed Australian fashion house Easton Pearson in a major exhibition showing in Brisbane.

More than 200 garments, each technically and creatively ground-breaking, feature in Museum of Brisbane’s major exhibition, The Designers’ Guide: Easton Pearson Archive.

The exhibition showcases the most daring technical innovations, fabric and embellishment choices of the fashion house over its 28 years and is complemented by sketches, accessories, samples, look books, photographs, interviews and anecdotes from the designers.

The archive also reveals the leading role they played at the forefront of slow fashion and ethical manufacture, working closely with artists, artisans and workshops across India and Vietnam to ensure good conditions, fair pay and respectful collaborations.

Museum chairwoman Sallyanne Atkinson said the museum was home to the Easton Pearson Archive which, comprising more than 3300 garments and more than 5000 objects, accessories and ephemera, is the largest collection from a single Australian fashion house held by a public art gallery or museum.

“From their base in Brisbane, Easton Pearson took their unique designs to the world, showing in Paris from 1997 and stocked by Browns in London, New York’s Bergdof Goodman, L'Eclaireur in Paris, Joyce in Hong Kong and David Jones across Australia, as well as Japan, Italy and the Middle East at the brand’s height,” Mrs Atkinson said.

“Through their bright, boldly-patterned and eclectically embellished designs, they invited women across the globe to enjoy our beautiful Brisbane lifestyle and developed a cult following that continues today.”

Museum director Renai Grace said the museum had been preparing for exhibition since receiving the collection in 2017.

“Pamela Easton and Lydia Pearson were the storytellers of Australian fashion,” she said.

“Their unique approach referenced art, travel, film, literature and music to create a bold aesthetic characterised by daring patterns, innovative materials, meticulous techniques and a sustainable ethos.

“Their designs remain cutting-edge, even today, due to Easton Pearson’s experimental, demi-couture processes and their passion for creating bespoke textiles, prints and embellishments as diverse as champagne bottle tops, raffia, silver thread and sequins, copper chain, felt, feathers and beads of almost every variety.”

The Designers’ Guide: Easton Pearson Archive is on until April 22, 2019. Tickets cost $12 and $9 for concessions, and children under-12 are admitted free. Book at museumofbrisbane.com.au

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