The V&A's new Clothworker Centre is extraordinary. It's amazing to see contemporary names in its archives

I’ve just been for a preview of the V&A’s new Clothworker Centre, for the study and research of textiles and fashion.

It’s extraordinary.

All of the textiles and fashion previously stored at the museum are now housed in their own storage facilities at Blythe House, near Olympia.

With specially constructed super-deep shelves, high rails to allow room for vast gowns, and as yet unfilled space for collections yet to be donated, garments yet to be made.

From next week, the facilities are open to the public by appointment for study, research and the enjoyment of cloth.

I just want to move in.

One of the loveliest things is to see some of the names on the end of the storage cabinets.

Here’s designers with surnames beginning S.


Look closer.

It says “Saunders, Jonathan”.

Next to Schiaparelli.


Here’s “Saint Laurent, Yves”.


Here’s designers K-L.


“Lang, Helmut”.


This cabinet had been wheeled open.

I went and looked inside.

The garments were all hung on a rail high, all in a protective cover.

Each labelled, with a photo.

One had a photo of a grey bomber, with elastic straps at the cuffs.

It was by Helmut Lang, from 2003-2004.

And there, peaking out, was a cuff. With an elastic strap.

So exciting that the idea of research and study can involve the contemporary.

Am desperate to go back.

For more info on how to book appointments, or to go on one of their monthly tours, click here etcetcetc