I’m working on a big blog post right now that requires quite a bit of preparation, so in the meantime I thought you might like to take a journey into the vault with me and take a peek at where the curatorial team spends a great deal of their free time. The collection is currently housed in the basement of the Millennium Centre, which was originally the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce built in 1911. When you enter the main floor of the Millennium Centre you are greeted with a view of the most spectacular ceiling:
I even took a close up of the beautiful work in the middle just for my blog readers.
One would assume the ceiling is a sky light, but it’s actually lit up by artificial light.
If we wander around the main floor for a bit we’d come across the Tapestry Room, this room used to be the bank manager’s office. There is a rumour that he haunts the place.
A view of the inside of the Tapestry Room:
In another area on the main floor is this awesome vault door:
However as I mentioned above the Costume Museum stores most of its collection in the basement of the building, so we descend the stairs to get to our vaults.
The hallway at the bottom of the stairs doesn’t provide much light, but I snapped a pic of it anyway. Look at the beautiful marble. This building is truly a work of art. You can even see a little bit of the old cage elevator at the end of the hall. It’s not currently operational, and to restore it would cost over a million dollars. Whenever I see it I think of the movie Titanic.
Here is a close-up of the elevator buttons.
Finally we come to the door of our main vault. Most of the collection is housed behind these doors. Inside there are hundreds of boxes stacked neatly on shelving units.
Inside those boxes are the most amazing treasures, garments that belonged to great grandmothers and aunts and grandfathers and uncles and sweet tiny babies and everyone in between. Tucked carefully into acid free archival quality tissue paper are pieces of history.
I hope that you enjoyed tonight’s tour and that you’ll be back for more.