Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Paperwork...and other exciting stuff!

It might seem like I've been MIA since the underwear exhibit opened, but really I've been holed up in my office catching up on paperwork!

When I'm in the middle of an exhibition, I don't have time to do donation paperwork, so I end up with a stack of it after the exhibition opens.  I'm making it a priority to try to set aside time every week to keep up with it, even if I am up to my eyeballs in exhibit planning, so I don't have to spend another week like last week.

This semester we have two new interns, Rebecca and Mary, who are doing a great job with cataloging all of these new donations.  They are each interested in doing an exhibit too, as well as populating a new artifact slideshow feature on our brand new website, scheduled to launch later this year.  Mary is working with our archivist one day a week, and Rebecca is taking photographs of the artifacts in the Street of Shops.  I'm happy to have the additional help with all of my collections projects.

The staff is also busy making our wish lists for this year's Capital & Replacement campaign.  Members will be receiving this annual appeal in October.  We work really hard to come up with new and exciting funding opportunitites that make our jobs easier.  Our budget is so limited, we can't afford many of these items without the generous support of our donors.  If you are one of them, THANK YOU!

Work is also in progress for Taste of Our Town this Thursday night.  We have a good crowd coming and we're looking forward to this event.

My Tea with the Curator on Monday September 29 is SOLD OUT!  We will be taking a tour of the underwear exhibit after a program on the history of women's underwear.  It promises to be a good time!  I completed the finishing touches on my program yesterday and printed out my notes.  This will now be a brand new outreach program too -- perfect for women's groups!

I also spent some time this week cleaning up my office.  I had piles everywhere!  Underwear that was not ultimately part of the exhibit has been returned to storage.  Research materials from the library have also been returned.  Donations have been processed and moved to the volunteers' office next door for cataloging.  Papers have been properly filed.  Lots of catalogs and magazines have been tossed in the recycling bin.  I had started to forget what color my desk was, since I haven't seen it in so long!

I think that's about it.  Some of the other things on my To Do List include:

  • Contacting the Brader owners who will be displaying their drawings in the next Keller Gallery exhibit, The Legacy of Ferdinand Brader, opening December 5 at our Holiday Open House.
  • Creating a program based on my book Canton Entertainment.  I was asked if I had a program based on the book, and I had not thought of that!  I'm booked for it in November.
  • Designing program and tickets for Taste of Our Town.  I have the 2012 program to tweak, which is much, much easier than starting from scratch!
  • I still have some cleaning to do in my files.  My filing cabinet is busting at the seams!  I have trouble getting rid of things.  Being a Curator is only a few degrees away from being a hoarder.  :-)

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Have you seen the tiara yet?


We had our annual Volunteer Enrichment Day today, where each department reports on the highlights of the past year.

OF COURSE, the Ida McKinley tiara was the biggest thing that has happened in my department this year!

I remembered that WFMJ was here the week before Chris and I were out of town in July, so we never saw the clip of their story about the tiara.  I searched for it and was excited to see that they were able to get a telephone interview with Rick Harrison!

Click here to see the story, featuring some of the Museum's volunteers who were also Tiara Fund Donors!

If you haven't see the tiara yet, come visit us.  You can also see some of Ida's underwear, while you're here!  "Mentioning the Unmentionables" is on view through November 30.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Underwear exhibit opens TONIGHT!

After a summer of immersing myself in the history of women's underwear, Mentioning the Unmentionables is finally ready to share with the public!

There is just so much to see.  We have everything from an 1810 corset to an underwear and cami set from 2003, and everything in between!

The exhibit is essentially a timeline of women's underwear history, with examples of garments and undergarments for most decades from 1810 to 1970.  Special sections include hosiery, nightgowns, bed jackets, and boudoir caps.

We even have two pieces of Ida McKinley's underwear on display!

Bloomers that belonged to First Lady Ida McKinley

The bloomers are marked "Ida Saxton" which dates them prior to her 1871 marriage
Text panels displayed with the artifacts provide context for each era's fashion changes, whether it's the hoop skirt of the 1860s, the bustle fad of the 1870s and 1880s, or the flat "Flapper style" of the 1920s.

The exhibit features more than 40 dress forms, plus additional garments on hanging display mounts and inside cases.

The opening is FREE and open to the public from 6:00 to 7:30 PM tonight.  If you can't make it, Mentioning the Unmentionables will be on view through Sunday November 30.

Here are a few more highlights!

1880s bustle, courtsey of Mary Doering

1880s bustle, Museum Collection

Corset waist, c1890s, courtesy of Mary Doering

One of approximately 15 exhibit panels in the exhibition

This is NOT A DRESS!  It is a petticoat and corset cover, c1890s, Museum Collection.

Long line corset, c1910-1912, courtesy of Mary Doeering.  Worn over a chemise of the same era from the Museum's Collection.

Chemise and drawers set, c1920s, Museum Collection

All-in-one, c1950s, courtesy of Jan Cassler

Cami and underwear set, c2003, courtesy of Linda Jordan

Morning jacket and boudoir caps, Museum Collection


Underwear, c1970, Museum Collection

Underwear by Pucci, courtesy of Mary Doering

Original drawing for a lingerie ad for The Parisian department store in Canton, courtesy of Jan Cassler