This Exquisite Fashion Exhibit At The Decorative Arts Center Of Ohio Showcases Some Iconic Hollywood Designers

💸 This post is sponsored by the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio. But rest assured, all thoughts and opinions contained within are genuine and our own. 👍🏼

The latest exhibit at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio is all about Hollywood glamour.

Distinctly Paramount showcases exactly how influential Hollywood has been on American fashion throughout the years. Paramount Pictures has been at the forefront of fashion trendsetting in films and television for over a century and now, you can see some of the studio’s most iconic looks in person at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio in Lancaster.

The exhibition was curated by Randall Thropp, who has managed Paramount Pictures’ prop and costume archive for nearly 20 years. Thropp has brought this hand-picked collection back to his hometown to showcase the incredible work of Hollywood designers throughout the years.

As Thropp was going through the stock of items owned by the studio, he realized just how many high-end pieces there were in storage that no one was getting the opportunity to enjoy. The clothing and props come from a variety of films and television series.

“Once a film is released in theaters, then I’m allow to go through and decide what we keep for archive,” Thropp explained. “I like to have a representation for each main character.”

Curator Randall Thropp at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio. Photo via Decorative Arts Center of Ohio.

The collection on display at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio has a wide variety of incredible pieces. When I asked Thropp what is favorite piece in the exhibition was, he was adamant about one thing: there’s no chance he could pick just one.

“They’re all my favorite pieces or I wouldn’t be showing them,” said Thropp.

Of the various collections featured in the exhibit, perhaps none have had quite the influence as the collection featuring the work of Edith Head. Head was an iconic Hollywood wardrobe designer who won eight Academy Awards for costume design and dressed legendary actresses like Grace Kelly, Sophia Loren, and Audrey Hepburn.

Photo via Decorative Arts Center of Ohio.

Distinctly Paramount: Fashion & Costume from the Paramount Pictures Archive will be on display through January 2, 2022. The Decorative Arts Center of Ohio is open Wednesday through Friday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday & Sunday  from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is always free. You can learn more about the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio by visiting decartsohio.org.

In conjunction with the exhibit, there are several special events happening over the next few months. You can get all the info about upcoming events at the Decorative Arts Center of Ohio below.


Farm to Fashion Nuno Scarf Workshop with Celeste Malvar-Stewart
Saturday, August 14, 12:30-3:00 pm
Ages 14+
$75/$68 members
Participants in this workshop will be introduced, through pictures and stories, to the various Ohio sheep and alpaca whose fiber they will use to create one of the most popular fashion accessories: a scarf. Learn the process of Nuno felting (aka laminate felting), using a silk base and textured raw fibre for surface design. Leave class having designed and hand felted your very own mini scarf with slit.
NOTE: Nuno felting is a wet felt process; participants should be prepared to get their hands wet. Please wear appropriate clothing and shoes. If you have a waterproof apron, please bring it to class.
Register for Scarf Workshop

Fashion of Our Times: A Runway Show Featuring Four Ohio-Based Designers
Saturday, September 18, 11:30 am-1:00 pm
$65/$60 members
Member pre-sale begins August 4, General Admission sales begin August 18
Join us for an intimate runway show, where we will feature four leading Ohio-based designers. This dynamic show will include designs inspired by some of the Paramount film costumes in our exhibition. Join a panel discussion for the designers to share their inspiration, vision, and other behind-the-scenes details leading up to creating their collections.

Designer: Tracy Powell
Brand: House of Isa
Tracy Powell was born to play dress up, which has now evolved into her love of costume design. Her love for textiles leads her to playing with the rough and soft, the shiny and dull – and her whimsical nature reflects her avant-garde approach.

Designer: Celeste Malvar-Stewart
Brand: MALVAR = STEWART
Celeste Malvar-Stewart focuses on creating unique, sustainable and ethical pieces. She works with Ohio farmers to obtain wool and alpaca fibres from their happy animals to create couture hand-felted and minimal waste fashion, often incorporating natural dyes. Her goal is to create a connection between ourselves and what we wear as to add greater value to our clothing and extend their use, while supporting local family farms and promoting their fibres.

Designer: Dom Susi
Dom Susi is a recent graduate of Columbus College of Art and Design, who, when not working on his clothing, usually explores new trends and styles as well as rockstar memoirs. He views fashion design as the “ideal art” because he believes it adds a sense of utility that most of the fine arts fail to provide.

Designer: Xuena Pu
Brand: Xuena
Xuena Pu endeavors to create avant-garde wearable art by applying traditional Chinese textile techniques from the ancient city of Kaifeng, where her mother and grandmother taught and inspired her. Her latest work was inspired by her fascination with macramé plant hangers and includes a combination of natural fabrics and waste yarn that has been rescued from local weavers, also reflecting her concern for sustainability and mindful making.

Forensic Costuming with Betsey Potter
Saturday, October 2 or Sunday, October 3, 1 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
Ages 14+
$30/$25 members
The restoration of vintage garments has taken on a new life -especially in Hollywood. Costume professional Betsey Potter has been at the forefront of that movement and will be sharing some of her techniques as well as reflecting on her experiences with vintage costumes and fabrics. The presentation will examine the skills needed for handling, cleaning, and displaying vintage pieces. She will be discussing the fabrics needed for restoration and where they can be found. In essence, participants will get a lesson in what to do and not do with your vintage clothing.
Register for Saturday

Register for Sunday

Headband Workshop with Xuena Pu
Sunday, October 17, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Ages 14+
$45/$40 members
Fashion designer Xuena Pu instructs learners on the hottest fashion trend, crochet and macramé clothing and accessories. This beginners’ class will teach participants the basics of crochet and macramé in a fun and supportive environment. All participants will learn to crochet their own headband using their new skills.
Register for Headband Workshop

Of Stanzas and Stilettos 
Sunday, October 17, 2 p.m.
$5/$8 members in advance, $10 at the door
Join award-winning Columbus poet Rikki Santer for a reading from her newest collection of poems, Head to Toe of It, which explores the complicated notions of fashion. Thomas McClure, Founder & Executive Director, Columbus Fashion Council & Fashion Week Columbus wrote about it: Rikki Santer completely gives the complex world of fashion a new perspective…her wordsmithery builds a showroom in your head and lets fashion come to life…in surprising and validating ways.
Register for Of Stanzas and Stilettos

Holiday Nuno Scarf Workshop with Celeste Malvar-Stewart
Saturday, November 6, 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Ages 14+
$75/$68 members
Participants in this workshop will be introduced, through pictures and stories, to the various Ohio sheep and alpaca whose fibre they will use to create one of the most popular fashion accessories: a scarf. Learn the process of Nuno felting (aka laminate felting), using a silk base and textured raw fibre for surface design. Leave class having designed and hand felted your very own mini scarf with slit. Perfect for a holiday gift!
NOTE: Nuno felting is a wet felt process; participants should be prepared to get their hands wet. Please wear appropriate clothing and shoes. If you have a waterproof apron, please bring it to class.
Register for Holiday Scarf Workshop

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