Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

November 15, 2012

Extravagance, beauty featured in exhibit at Highlands

Staff Writer
The Independent

ASHLAND — Fashions and cosmetics of the past are on parade at the Highlands Museum and Discovery Center with the exhibit “Vanity: Exhibit on Beauty and Extravagance.”

The exhibit includes clothing from the museum’s collection that shows some of the most elaborate fashions in American history.

Curator Heather Akers said the exhibit began with a glamorous purple evening gown from the 1980s¸which inspired her to find other items in the collection that showed the extremes women have gone to to look stylish and attractive.

Alongside the dress from the 1980s is a formal dress from the 1920s, a dressing gown and a corset. Perhaps most unusual is a monkey fur coat with beaver lining from the 1930s or 1940s.

The exhibit also includes cosmetics, such as eye shadow, nail polish and other make up from other eras. Compacts for powder and powder puffs make an appearance; the compacts are the refillable kind that aren’t in common use today, Akers said.

“They are very decorative and were popular as gifts,” she said.

The exhibit will continue through Jan. 31.