A visit to Loel Thomson’s Costume Collection

An evening visit to Loel Thomson’s amazing collection of period dress has been organised for next month:

What: The Costume Collection, talk and tour.
When: Thursday 16th February, 2012 – 6pm – 8pm.
Where: 39 Greenaway Street, Bulleen.
Cost: $5 which Loel donates to a local nursing home.
Bookings: call Circa on 9419 8899.

Loel is a private collector who has dedicated her time and resources to the collection, preservation and display of over two hundred years of Australian fashion. Many of her pieces were included in my book Love Vintage.

I’m sure that she has the best collection of Australian fashion in the country, as well as jewellery, accessories and lace. There’s also an impressive tea cosy collection!

Here’s a pic that I took at a previous visit – Loel uses vintage mannequins and styles the hair according to the date of the clothing.

Regency era – 1820s.

For those who are interested in social history, the history of fashion or just beautiful clothes, I thoroughly recommend this visit. Numbers are limited and RSVP is essential. Please call the shop on 9419 8899, if you get the answering machine, please leave your name, phone number and how many people you would like to book.

Hope to see you there!


  1. hello there, just wondering if you have any costumes in the 1912 era ? or if you know of anyone that does.. thanks sue

  2. Hi Susan, yes I do – I just need to get them ready for the webshop and they’ll be available. I really like fashion from this era.

  3. Great to see you posting on this, I have had her details for a long time, and it is good to see what she has, will try and get there, if I possibly can. Thanks Nicole!

  4. Hello Loel,

    My name is Helen Jenkin. I am the Convenor of Social outings for the Knox Life Activities Club. A group of our ladies visited your display a number of years ago and were amazed and delighted with the items we saw.
    I would like to re-visit next year with a group of senior ladies. I am currently preparing my programme for Jan. Feb. and March. Is it possible for us to come on Monday, 19th March?
    I would be delighted if you could reply either by e-mail or phone me on
    9729 1151.

  5. Hi Helen, apologies but you’ve come through to me, not Loel. You can phone her direct on (03) 9852 1794 and I’m sure she can advise availability. Thank you.

  6. I represent the Ringwood branch of U3A and I would like to arrange a visit to your wonderful display. I am looking at a date in October.
    If you could email me with dates available I would appreciate it.

  7. Hi Loel
    Your name was given to me as someone who may be interested in an item of clothing from the 1960s. A hand crocheted (3 ply wool) full length dress. Pretty stunning! Unfortunately, I can no longer fit into it!!! Also it’s not fashionable at the moment 😉 However, I would love it to go to a collection somewhere where it could be admired. I told you it’s stunning! It’s in perfect condition.
    I am not able to attach photos to this message, but am happy to send you photos, and also to get the dress to you if you’re interested.
    Please let me know if you’re interested.
    Thank you
    Lindsay Jacombs

  8. I organise outings for seniors at Balwyn Evergreen, we are a community Centre that run various activities and I’m always looking for new and interesting place to go and see.
    I would like to make a booking in May for a group to come out and see your collection, please can you contact me.
    Thank you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *