The natural world’s profound influence on fashion will be showcased at a new V&A exhibition next year, and among its exhibits will be a dress – made almost entirely from recycled plastic bottles – worn by Emma Watson to 2016’s Met Gala.
Fashioned from Nature, which will take place between April 21 2018 and January 27 2019, will display 300 “beautiful, intriguing and unsettling” objects from 1600 to the present day, with special attention paid to innovative fabrics.
Older highlights include a muslin dress from the 1860s decorated with hundreds of green wings from jewel beetles, and a man’s waistcoat – embroidered with a pattern of Macaque monkeys – from the 1780s.
Among the earliest pieces is a 17th-century women’s jacket featuring embroidered pea-shoot and flower patterns.
More contemporary exhibits include an H&M dress fashioned from recycled ocean plastic, a Ferragamo collection made using waste from Italy’s citrus industry, and a Gucci bag adorned with stag beetle motifs.
Fashioned from Nature, which will be arranged chronologically, will also highlight the raw materials used by the fashion industry – and the proposed solutions for how it can lessen its environmental impact.