Smith Shows Off Vintage Glad Rags in Darien

Smith Shows Off Vintage Glad Rags in Darien

  • Date: 6:30pm Wednesday, April 28, 2010
  • Place: Darien Library
  • Price: Free
Beautiful clothes may not be in the budget these days but it's still fun to drool over them. So drool away at Darien Library on April 28 at 7 p.m. Charlotte Smith, curator of Sydney, Australia's Fashion and Textile Gallery and author of "Dreaming of Dior: Every Dress Tells A Story," does a show-and-tell with vintage clothes from the 5,000-piece collection she inherited from her American godmother, Doris Darnell. The collection traces fashion's evolution. Its oldest piece is a 1790 pioneer dress. The most recent ones date to the mid-1990s, with plenty of Chanels, Diors and Balenciagas to gape at. Mrs. Darnell was not a Mrs. Moneybags, in spite of the size of her closet. She worked as a librarian at Bryn-Mawr and Haverford Colleges and much of her collection was donated. She kept a written history of all her clothes. In a 1996 Philadelphia Inquirer story, Mrs. Darnell said, "I consider myself a custodian of clothes and their stories--who wore them, who gave them to me, what their lives were like, the foibles of the times." She died at 90, in 2006. Shortly after, Charlotte Smith was surprised by boxes of the clothes arriving at her home. Her new book describes the provenance and stories behind many of these fashionable artifacts and the joy of wearing them.



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