Short courses at RAMM
Take a closer look at RAMM’s amazing collections
This varied programme of short courses gives our visitors an exclusive opportunity to learn more about the museum’s most fascinating items. RAMM is home to over a million objects, but only a tiny fraction are ever on display. Join one of our experienced tutors to discover more about what is hiding amongst the collections as they uncover some of RAMM’s secrets.
All courses currently take place online as Zoom sessions. Details will be emailed to you in advance of the date.
Vivien Leigh: Hollywood via Devon
Wed 21 Apr, 7 to 9pm
Rural Devon is not where you would expect to find links to two-time Oscar- winning actress, Vivien Leigh. Join Victoria Haddock to discover more about Leigh’s connections to the quaint historic estuary port of Topsham and how some of her film costumes and couture clothing have made their way into the collections of museums in the South West, including the Royal Albert Memorial Museum. This course will look at these items of clothing, and their designers, in detail, to explore Leigh’s legacy as a style icon.
Victoria Haddock is a graduate of the Masters degree in the History of Design and Material Culture from the University in Brighton, where her dissertation focused on the topic of fashion tie-ins inspired by film costumes during the 1930s. She currently works in collections care for Zenzie Tinker Conservation and has previously worked for the Gallery of Costume, Platt Hall, and the National Trust’s Killerton House.
Bathing Beauties: Vintage swimwear
Wed 12 May, 10am to 12pm
Based on her book of the same name, join Jill Salen for this online session on the history of English swimwear focusing on the individual garments of both men and women, and their clothing-historical context. Sea bathing outfits were being designed as early as the 1780s. By the 1880s the general population was becoming more enthusiastic about healthy pursuits, cycling, walking, golf and swimming. To allow these pastimes to be pursued appropriate clothes were required, however, by today’s standards these elaborate garments are rarely appropriate.
Jill Salen is a retired lecturer in costume. As a freelance costume maker she has made costumes for many clients, including Shakespeare’s Globe, Cosprop, and the Welsh National Opera. She is also the author of a number of successful publications on corsetry, costume history and construction.
Well heeled: shoes and boots
Thur 17 June, 10am to 12pm
From straights and flats to stiletto heels, this session will explore RAMM’s collection of footwear and take a look at how boots and shoes
were made, sold and advertised in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. Discover some intriguing stories about shoes and their owners, and have a chance to examine footwear from the collections up close. Find out how to identify materials and date fashionable shoes in this engaging workshop.
Shelley Tobin is a dress historian, an author and the curator of RAMM’s extensive costume and textile collection. Shelley also curates the costume collection for the National Trust at Killerton House. She has over 25 years of experience documenting, researching and taking costume to new audiences.