Dinah Collin designed the costumes for the 1995 BBC television
production of Pride and Prejudice, which starred Jennifer
Ehle as Elizabeth Bennet and Colin Firth as Mr Darcy.
Pride and Prejudice is one of the best-loved novels of
all time: the adventures of the five Bennet sisters, and their
search for love and happiness, still capture the hearts of readers
the world over. Dinah Collin studied early nineteenth century
printed cottons, which would give variety to the numerous dresses
required over the six episodes, and would perfectly create the
light, youthful look of the five young women.
Printed cottons are one of the distinctive fashions of this time.
Textile printing in this country had slowly been changing from wood
block printing to copper plate printing since the mid eighteenth
century, with the result that more intricate designs with larger
pattern repeats could be produced.
The famous scene where Darcy dives into the lake and then
emerges, shirt dripping, and encounters Elizabeth has become the
stuff of romantic legend. But, as Christopher Prins from
Cosprop recalls, the famous ‘wet shirt scene’ almost did not
happen. The exhibition describes how this pivotal moment was
conceived and the part that Colin Firth played in creating
Original nineteenth century dresses of printed
Yellow printed muslin dress worn by Polly
Maberley as Kitty Bennet