Creative & Connected: October edition

Enjoy these simple and creative activities for people affected by dementia, their carers and loved ones from our Memories of London team. This month: London's fabulous fashions.

Download activity pack

The title appears next to black and white photographs of past Londoners.

October is Black History Month – an annual reflection on the history, achievements and contributions of Black people in the UK – so we’re exploring some of the styles and fashions of 20th-century London, with a special focus on the influence of London’s Black communities.

Get creative with our packs and join our team online for chat over a cuppa about London's past.


London Lives podcast

In this podcast series we delve into the rich stories of London’s people to create an audible journey to the past.

Each episode is inspired by an object from the Museum of London collection and shares the reflections of real Londoners and their London lives. Listen back to hear wonderful stories of a cheeky, century-old Steiff teddy bear, the joys of Caribbean carnival and more!

Electric typewriters were gradually introduced into the workplace from the late 1930s. They enabled office work to be completed more speedily and neatly. They also benefited typists, as the keys required much less force than those on a manual typewriter keyboard.

Share a story with us

Our next podcast is all about Londoners’ working lives and is inspired by this IBM electric typewriter. After being introduced in the 1930s, the electric typewriter enabled office work to be completed quickly and neatly.

  • What jobs have you, your family or friends done?
  • Perhaps you were a typist?
  • Or were you a nurse, soldier, ticket collector or hairdresser?

We’d love to talk to you! If you’d like to share your story email [email protected] and we will get in touch to find out more.


Time for a cuppa

Illustration of a steaming mug in pink on a white background.

Put the kettle on

Join us for a brew and a natter

Why not join us for a live online session where we will be joined by Mara the storyteller, an artist of dual Kenyan and Scottish cultural heritage as we explore objects from London’s past in this relaxed session.

Join us on Thursday 5 November, 10.30-11.30am.

To take part please register by:

Or:

  • Calling 07780 504506 Monday-Friday, 9am-6pm (Standard network rates apply)


Activity pack

Simply click the following link to download a large-print PDF copy of this month's activity pack.

We recommend printing it off as it has activities to fill out, trace or complete, such as this playful wordsearch:

Wordsearch inspired by the Dub London display on an orange background with an illustration of a punk.

Things to do and ways to create

Get your copy so you don't miss out!

You can also enjoy some of this month's Creative & Connected activity pack below:

Beauty is everywhere

Copy of a magazine called 'Black Beauty and Hair Magazine', May-June 1986. The magazine sells itself as being for 'the beauty conscious black woman' and was recommended by the Caribbean/ Afro Society of Hairdressers UK. The magazine was published once every two months and includes articles on hair, make-up and fashion. It also has interviews with black style icons from the music business such as Diana Ross, Princess and pop group Imagination.

This Black beauty Magazine was aimed at beauty-conscious Black women and included articles on hair and Black fashion icons.

What does ‘beauty’ mean to you? Is it found in the mirror, in nature, in loved ones or in things you enjoy doing?

Write, draw or paint your ideas!

Got a camera? Why not photograph something you find beautiful and stick it on your wall? Share your photos by emailing [email protected]

Hair today, gone tomorrow

Photo of a bottle of African Pride hair braid spray. Bought in Brixton, an area particularly associated with London's Afro-Caribbean community.

Perfect for twisting, braiding or locking

This African Pride hair spray was bought in the 1990s in Brixton and claims to soften, moisturise and condition hair.

How do you like your hair to be styled? Do you use hairspray or any other products?

Design your own London hairstyle!

You could use materials or collage, pencils, pens or paint. Will you take inspiration from these iconic hairstyles?

  • Mohican
  • Quiff
  • Dreadlocks
  • Braids
  • Back comb
  • Afro
  • Beehive
  • Perm

Do you have any favourites from those styles?

Sensory creativity

Colourful illustration of a tray, dye, shaving foam and brushes surrounded by splodges of paint.

What sprays, perfumes, shampoos or creams do you have at home? What do they smell like? How do they feel when they’re rubbed into your skin or hair?

Have some fun and make an artwork with shaving foam.

What you need:

  • Tray
  • Shaving foam
  • Food dye
  • Paintbrush or stick

How to do it:

  • Mix a few drops of food colouring into the shaving foam
  • Draw patterns or pictures in the foam with the paint brush or stick in the tray
  • Experiment by mixing the colours. What can you make?

Catwalk

This purple suede mini skirt was purchased from a jumble sale in Fulham and is paired with a viberant orange blouse.

What do you think of this purple suede mini skirt?

Bright, bold colours were all the rage in the 60s and were frequently seen on London’s catwalks.

The clothes we wear can say a lot about us. The iconic 1960s mini skirt, for example, was often associated with rebellion and developing youth cultures in some London communities.

Did you know?

The ‘invention’ of the short skirt is often attributed to Mary Quant, but other designers, such as André Courrèges, were shortening hemlines at the same time.

Let’s see your most vibrant outfit! Dress up in your most colourful clothes. How do they make you feel? Where would you usually wear them?

As a young person, did you ever create your own unique style or follow any trends?

Do you have a photo from when you were a teenager? If you’re in a group setting, why not organise your own catwalk show? Share your photos by emailing [email protected]

Draw the music

A sound system photographed with a young man standing next to it at the Notting Hill Carnival.

Bassline of a city

Dub has influenced many music genres, including the early days of punk, with The Clash drawing on its unique sound.

Dub London, a temporary display at the Museum of London, celebrates the influence of dub reggae – a genre of electronic music that grew out of Jamaican reggae in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Have you ever listened to dub music? Give it a try!

  1. Grab a pencil and paper
  2. Switch on some music and close your eyes.
  3. Put the pencil to the paper and listen closely.
  4. Move your pencil to the rhythm, drawing what you hear.
  5. When the music has finished, look at your paper. How does it look? You’ve made a visual artwork from a sound!

Repeat this with another music genre. How does classical or pop music compare to the sound of dub?

That's all we have for you this time, but remember to join us again next month!

You can find all the issues of Creative & Connected right here.