The B.J. Simmons & Co. costume shop in London produced costumes for theater and film, along with renting out costumes to such venues for over 100 years. The Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin has a web exhibition of 228 costume designs from over 60 productions from the span of 1889-1959. Some of the costumes are categorized in the "Costume Designs" link into "Early Opera at the Covent Garden", "Musicals & Revues", "Cinema", and "Pageants & Pantomimes". Visitors will also find a category entitled "Two Complete Portfolios". Since the collection is so big, (34,000 items in the costume design portfolios alone) it is "difficult to get a sense of the size of the archive, to know what is typical, and to see how designers used source material from several portfolios to dress a new production." The "Two Complete Portfolios" allows visitors to make those comparisons at their leisure, and visitors will want to spend some quality time wandering around this excellent collection. [KMG]


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