Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Make Do and Mend

Make Do and Mend is the name of just one of the current exhibitions at the Museum of Childhood (www.vam.ac.uk/moc), in Bethnal Green, satellite of the V&A Museum. 
Particularly relevant in these credit crunch times are the offerings from three contemporary designers who have reinvented and recycled everyday materials. Old socks have been turned into loveable toys, a battered chair given a new lease of life with a glossy floral covering and an abandoned supermarket trolley converted into a stylish chair. Victorian parlour games, traditional moving toys and wooden rocking horses are some of exhibits in the permanent collection, where the cry of  'I remember those!' can be heard from reminiscent adults wandering around the galleries. The museum also has a serious remit. Dedicated to informing the public about child labour, its extensive outreach programme in Newham, Tower Hamlets and Hackney is designed to help all visitors explore the themes of childhood – past and present.