'Downton Abbey' fashion welcomed to Duluth Public Library

IMG_0516 "Downton Abbey" inspired month at the Duluth Public Library brings interest of Edwardian style fashion show, put on by clothing collector Evelyn Gray on Saturday Nov.16.

Gray is a member of the Duluth community, spending most of her time volunteering at the Depot downtown.


"The Depot is my second home," Gray said. "They are so nice to me there, I like to help out in any way I can. If they asked me to pour coffee, I would be happy to pour coffee."

Gray began collecting vintage clothing over 20 years ago.

"I don't know what it is that interests me about the clothes," said Gray. "It depends on the decade I am reading up on, something just catches my eye."

Many pieces of clothing from the fashion show was given to Gray from friends and members of the community.

"I have a bridal dress that belonged to a neighbor and another bridal dress that had belonged to a friend's mother," said Gray. "I guess people just think of me when they see an item I might be interested in."


Not only a collector, Gray likes to show off her clothes to other people who may be interested.

"I have taken my clothes, packed in a trailer, to many shows around the city," said Gray. "People seem to be interested to see what I have found."

When Duluth Public Library had decided to do a "Downton Abbey" inspired month, Librarian Kathy Bushey contacted Gray asking if she could help out with the fashion show.

"After watching Downton Abbey I was fascinated with how much the clothing had changed in a matter of 10 years or so," said Bushey. "I thought it would be interesting to show the clothing from that time."

The pieces of the fashion show are estimated to be from 1912-1920.

"After I talked to Kathy I put together some of the clothing I had from that time period," said Gray. "I am happy to help out."

While preparing for the show, Lynn Stringer, grandmother of fashion show model Maria Johnson, was able to look closely at some of the pieces.

"I like to sew and I was just thinking about the time that must have gone into making some of these pieces," said Stringer. "The beads all look like they are hand sewn and very detailed."

Cyrina Ostgaard had heard about the fashion show and was eager to volunteer to model.

"I am really into fashion," said Ostgaard. "I loved the whole '20s theme because it was a different sense of fashion than we have now. Plus it's just fun to get dressed up."

Through the month of November the Duluth Public Library is having several events centered around the show "Downton Abbey". Check out their Facebook page to learn more.



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