Net worth: Molly Goddard’s tulle creations stalk the V&A Museum

Molly Goddard’s storied use of tulle.
Molly Goddard’s storied use of tulle, as seen at the V&A Museum, London
(Image credit: Kamil Kustosz / Molly Goddard)

Fashion designer Molly Goddard grew up a stones throw away from the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. She remembers running through the halls as a child, and she's au fait with its many grand galleries and vast collections.

On Friday, she dashed through the museum again. This time, to hearty applause, after her 2018 Resort collection paraded through the newly opened, subterranean Sainsbury Gallery, in the kind of immersive showcase Goddard's known for.

'My run-on at the end was so embarrassing!' she says, out of breath after the show, dodging gaggles of congratulatory audience members. She's trying to find her boyfriend and her parents, who were instrumental in pulling the event together, as they have been for many of Goddard's performative runways.

Her parents, Sarah and Mark, designed the elaborate set – though Mark is keen to point out Sarah has been the driving force. 'I just carried things about,' he laughs.

Dining room mise

(Image credit: Jamie Stoker)

Dining room mise en scène.

The amount of crafty, resourceful work evident in the set belies his modesty. ‘Absolutely everything is handmade, hand painted, and on a shoe-string budget,' Sarah explains, picking up a handful of paper plates that, from a distance, look like priceless Delftware pottery housed in the gallery above. They help make up the dining room scene, complete with bread rolls and kitsch napkins. Opposite, an enormous bed imposes itself. 'It's inspired by The State Bed from Melville House, as seen in the gallery upstairs,' Molly adds. 'It's flamboyant, like the clothes.'

After weaving through a makeshift sculpture gallery, mimicking that of the V&A Sculpture Court, models congregate in the bedroom and dining area, folding their trains daintily underneath themselves on the bed, or sipping from a (plastic) glass. They are teenagers playing make-believe.

It's a colourful, Alice In Wonderland-esque display, filled with girlish joy and childlike abandon. Thankfully, the abundant, billowing tulle that Goddard favours is here in full force, including an impressive blue gown that made waves earlier this year at her Tate Modern show. Indeed, many of the clothes are archival, stretching back to pieces made while studing at Central Saint Martins. They are interspersed with a handflul of new designs. This new collection marks itself apart with punk-ish pops of tartan and more wearable shapes. 'The new pieces are paired down,' Goddard explains. 'They're free and easy, compared to all the big grand dresses that I have been making.'

These lightweight, slim silhouettes act as a reprieve mid-showcase. Their inclusion hints toward a more serious moment in the designer's career. Despite the infectious, light-hearted whimsy that overwhelms the show, it's these quieter moments that prove Goddard's mature complexity. 

The bedroom installation.

The bedroom installation, inspired by The State Bed from Melville House, from the V&A Collection.

(Image credit: Jamie Stoker)

Resort 2018 collection featured more wearable.

The new Resort 2018 collection featured more wearable, pattern-heavy designs.

(Image credit: Kamil Kustosz/ Molly Goddard)


For more information, visit the Molly Goddard website, and the V&A website


V&A Museum
Cromwell Rd


Elly Parsons is the Digital Editor of Wallpaper*, where she oversees and its social platforms. She has been with the brand since 2015 in various roles, spending time as digital writer – specialising in art, technology and contemporary culture – and as deputy digital editor. She was shortlisted for a PPA Award in 2017, has written extensively for many publications, and has contributed to three books. She is a guest lecturer in digital journalism at Goldsmiths University, London, where she also holds a masters degree in creative writing. Now, her main areas of expertise include content strategy, audience engagement, and social media.