a curious invitation last tuesday society
a curious invitation robert carlyles house last tuesday society national trust london
Ian Kelly on Suits Sex and Savile Row


Beau Brummell and the Soho origins of British fashion with Ian Kelly

Tuesday 9th June 2015
Doors open at 6:30 pm, Talk commences at 7:00 pm

Ian Kelly, bestselling author of biographies of Regency dandy Beau Brummell and contemporary fashion icon Vivienne Westwood, gives an unexpected insight into the cross-over between the old West End sex trade and new world of tailoring and fashion in the 19th century. Linking themes that both books and their subjects share - tailoring, mavericks in fashion, politics, sex and celebrity - this talk addresses the cult of the dandy and its hero, Beau Brummell, but also the scandalous world of Regency high society and the long life of its accidental bastard child: the suit.

'Beau Brummell, biography simply as good as it gets' The Times

'Vivienne Westwood: fabulous, fetishistically brilliant biography' Philip Hoare, The Daily Telegraph

Ian Kelly
Ian Kelly is a multi-award winning actor and author, whose work, Mr Foote's Other Leg: Comedy, tragedy and murder in Georgian London, aligns his unique twin-careers. One of his previous books, a biography of Casanova, received universally rapturous reviews and was named Sunday Times Biography of the Year. With unprecedented access to Vivienne Westwood, and her full co-operation, Ian Kelly's most recent book is the story of the woman behind one of the last remaining independent fashion houses.

Tickets £20 including a glass of prosecco. Please click here to buy.


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9th June 2015
Suits, Sex and Savile Row with Ian Kelly

14th July 2015
Kate Bethune on Alexander McQueen

In 1863, a French wine merchant called Daniel Nicholas Thévenon and his wife arrived in England in a bid to escape the clutches of creditors in Paris. So began a story that grew out of bankruptcy and culminated in the creation of Regent Street’s Café Royal: a truly remarkable and original establishment with what was considered at one point to have the greatest wine cellar in the world and was reputed for its excellent hospitality, dining and entertainment. 

Frequented by writers and artists such as Oscar Wilde and Aubrey Beardsley, the conversations, inspirations and discussions at ‘The Café’ were profound. Arthur Conan Doyle, H G Wells, George Bernard Shaw, Rudyard Kipling, W B Yeats, Walter Sickert and James McNeill Whistler were all patrons. Distinguished figures such as Winston Churchill, Augustus John, D H Lawrence, Virginia Woolf, Noël Coward, Jacob Epstein and Graham Greene were also often seen.