SINCE 2009

History

Make memories with us, meet friends, and dive into the richest treasures of fashion history!

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what-we-do

Beautiful Places

Exciting cities, charming villages, stunning stately homes, quiet countryside–our tours include it all.  You’ll take it all in from private coaches and train windows and leisurely walks.

Private Collections

We open the doors to some of Britain’s finest private collections of historical fashion. You’ll also be able to request particular items or specify a favorite time period!

Great Events

Our tours always include costumed events where you can show off your own handiwork and share your enthusiasm with other participants. Don’t forget your bonnet!

Excellent Company

We agree with Jane Austen: “My idea of good company is the company of clever, well-informed people who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company.”

itineraries

Tour Itineraries

sepitinerary

September 2016 Tour Itinerary

We are very excited to announce a brand new tour for 2016, including three nights in the beautiful city of York, private costume study in the Bowes Museum, a day trip to the Brontë parsonage in Haworth, plus a private tour of Warwick Castle before we finish off with a day of exclusive workshops in Georgian Bath to kick off the weekend.

You will have a unique opportunity to view rare and beautiful historical garments in two museum collections, ask questions of the curators, receive specialized instruction in deportment, dance, shoemaking, and more. We will enjoy delicious meals together every day, and we’ll all dress in our finest for the Regency Promenade in Bath at the opening of the 2016 Jane Austen Festival!

Sunday, September 4

You will arrive in the UK (your choice of airport) and make your way to Manchester, checking in at the exquisite Midland Hotel by late afternoon. Our group icebreaker will take place at 7:30pm, including antique garment Show and Tell and a chance to try on vintage garments. 

Monday, September 5

After a delicious breakfast, you board our private coach for the brief journey to Macclesfield in Cheshire, home to the Macclesfield Silk Museum. You will enjoy a tour of the mills in the morning, then pop back into the coach for the short journey to beautiful Tabley House, a Palladian Mansion that houses a stunning collection of 17th- and 18th-century portraiture and much more. Tabley’s guide is creating a special private themed tour just for our group, and we will kick that off with luncheon in their lovely tea room. Mid-afternoon, you will board the train for historic York. After checking in at our charming hotel, Jennie will offer a walking tour of the city, taking in sights which include York Minster, the medieval city wall, the famous Shambles Market, and much more. The remainder of the evening is yours to enjoy in the city or relaxing at the hotel, which is just steps outside the Monkbar Gate. 

Tuesday, September 6

After breakfast, you will board the private coach for the drive to Nottingham, where we will visit Newstead Abbey, former home of Lord Byron and now host to the famous Nottingham Costume Collection! Curator Judith Edgar says, “The Costume and Textiles Collection is very extensive dating from the 16th century up to a Nottingham Lace dress made last year. Our lace collections – including both machine and hand-made lace – have been recognised as a collection of national and international importance by the Arts Council and granted Designation status.” You will enjoy private study behind the scenes (and members can request specific time periods), plus a tour of the house. A delicious buffet lunch will be served before you return to York. The balance of the day is yours to enjoy in this lovely city (Jennie will provide a full list of things you can do and see; there is no lack!). 

Wednesday, September 7

After breakfasting, you will board a private coach for the journey to Haworth for a tour of Brontë Parsonage Museum, which contains exhibits that include one of Charlotte’s gowns, her wedding bonnet, her original embroidery and lace designs, many original letters and manuscripts, and more. You will have time to explore the village of Haworth and enjoy lunch at your choice of establishments before rejoining the group for the trip back to York. At 5pm, we will gather at York’s famous Bettys for a full afternoon tea with all the trimmings in the elegant private tearoom overlooking St Helen’s Square. A surprise speaker will join us at this delightful event as well!

Thursday, September 8

You will check out of the hotel, then board our private coach for the trip from York to Bath via Warwickshire. We will break our journey at the amazing Warwick Castle, enjoying a group luncheon and our own private tour, taking in the fabulous costumed waxworks representing a Victorian house party. After completing our journey to Bath, we will check in at the perfectly situated Abbey Hotel, right in the heart of this historic, World Heritage city. The evening is free for you to settle in and enjoy.

Friday, September 9

Workshop Day! Beginning at 10am, you will choose from a variety of workshops and speakers, including Regency cosmetics expert Sally Pointer (who did the makeup for the BBC documentary, ‘Pride & Prejudice, Having a Ball’); Jackie Ward, an expert in Regency deportment and dance; Cathy Hay on Worth couture, Peter Ward demonstrating historic shoemaking on a budget; and more. We will break for a catered group lunch, then enjoy further sessions between 1 and 3. Each participant will also receive a special historical button-making kit by Gina-B. Late afternoon and evening are free for sightseeing and last-minute sewing before Saturday’s promenade!

Saturday, September 10

After a delicious breakfast in the award-winning Allium Restaurant, we will walk to join the hundreds of festival participants for the Grand Costumed Promenade, walking through Bath’s most famous thoroughfares to kick off the Jane Austen Festival. This is truly the ultimate way to see Bath, as traffic is halted along our route, and Janeites take over the city! You will be free to eat lunch at the conclusion of the promenade and have the afternoon free until we are ready to regroup for our own private closing supper at Tilleys Bistro.

Sunday, September 11

Enjoy sleeping in if you like, have breakfast at the hotel, then check out by 11am. Suzi and Jennie are happy to help you plan the remainder of your time in the UK if you wish to extend to see London or other places.


Total Package Price: $2,695

* Single supplement (for a private room) $800
This tour currently has two slots open. 
Please click Contact in the menu if you would like to join us. Thanks!
whats-included

What’s Included?

From award-winning accommodations to fabulous costumed events, we provide all you need to create incredible memories with our group!

One night in the four-star Midland Hotel, downtown Manchester.

Three nights in the newly refurbished three-star Monkbar Hotel in York.

Three nights in the beautiful boutique Abbey Hotel in Bath.

Full English breakfast daily.

Train ticket to York from Manchester.

Private walking tour of historical York.

Private coach journeys for Newstead Abbey and Haworth.

Private coach to Bath from York via Warwick Castle.

Admission to all museums and costume collections on the itinerary.

Ticket for Jane Austen Festival’s Costumed Promenade.

 Exclusive workshops and a unique historical button kit.

Group luncheons at Tabley House, at Newstead Abbey, Warwick Castle, plus high tea at Bettys in York.

 Final group supper at a special private venue in historical Bath.

Ready to Book? Have Questions?

Drop Us a Line!

gallery

Photos from Previous Tours

Check out images from five previous tours to see what you can look forward to!

team

Meet the Team

We look forward to the pleasure of your company!

Jennie Chancey
Jennie Chancey

Jennie Chancey

Tour Leader

Jennie Chancey started Sense & Sensibility Clothing in 1996, creating custom historical fashions for local clients and launching a small website without ever dreaming of expanding into pattern publication. After publishing her original Regency Gown Pattern in 1998, she launched into an adventure that has included meeting an amazing array of professionals and hobbyists in historical fashion. At her husband’s urging, she put together the first Historical Fashion Tour in 2009, drawing on her lifelong love of England and her passion for sharing history and creative sewing with others. Each year’s trip has brought together a diverse group of enthusiastic travelers from all over the world.

Suzi Clarke
Suzi Clarke

Suzi Clarke

Costumier

Now retired, Suzi created historical costumes of most periods, up to about 1830 for men and 1900 for women and children, researching in as much detail as possible, using primary sources such as original garments in museums and private collections. Suzi gives talks and demonstrations about what she did, showing actual garments and materials and drawing on over 40 years’ experience working with costume for theatre, including the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal National Theatre, Amsterdam Opera, film, T.V., museums, and for static displays, re-enactors, historical dancers and costumed interpreters. She has been co-leader of Sense & Sensibility Tours since the first trip in 2009.

Cathy Hay
Cathy Hay

Cathy Hay

Guest Lecturer

Cathy Hay is a British costume maker who cannot resist letting extraordinary gowns step out of the glass case, slip back in time, and be recreated just as they were on the night they were first worn. She supports and inspires the work of costumiers and corsetieres worldwide with the award winning, unique online magazines Your Wardrobe Unlock’d and Foundations Revealed. She is an artist, an entrepreneur, a would-be aristocrat, a yoga nut, a swimmer, an adventurer, and a passionate romantic with a significant weakness for Edwardian couture. Cathy has featured as a guest speaker many times since the original 2009 tour.

Jennie Chancey

Jennie Chancey

Tour Leader

Jennie Chancey started Sense & Sensibility Clothing in 1996, creating custom historical fashions for local clients and launching a small website without ever dreaming of expanding into pattern publication. After publishing her original Regency Gown Pattern in 1998, she launched into an adventure that has included meeting an amazing array of professionals and hobbyists in historical fashion. At her husband’s urging, she put together the first Historical Fashion Tour in 2009, drawing on her lifelong love of England and her passion for sharing history and creative sewing with others. Each year’s trip has brought together a diverse group of enthusiastic travelers from all over the world.

Suzi Clarke

Suzi Clarke

Costumier

Now retired, Suzi created historical costumes of most periods, up to about 1830 for men and 1900 for women and children, researching in as much detail as possible, using primary sources such as original garments in museums and private collections. Suzi gives talks and demonstrations about what she did, showing actual garments and materials and drawing on over 40 years’ experience working with costume for theatre, including the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Royal National Theatre, Amsterdam Opera, film, T.V., museums, and for static displays, re-enactors, historical dancers and costumed interpreters. She has been co-leader of Sense & Sensibility Tours since the first trip in 2009.

Cathy Hay

Cathy Hay

Guest Lecturer

Cathy Hay is a British costume maker who cannot resist letting extraordinary gowns step out of the glass case, slip back in time, and be recreated just as they were on the night they were first worn. She supports and inspires the work of costumiers and corsetieres worldwide with the award winning, unique online magazines Your Wardrobe Unlock’d and Foundations Revealed. She is an artist, an entrepreneur, a would-be aristocrat, a yoga nut, a swimmer, an adventurer, and a passionate romantic with a significant weakness for Edwardian couture. Cathy has featured as a guest speaker many times since the original 2009 tour.

comments

Comments from Past Tour Group Members

Happy Traveler 1

Adventure

 It was quite an adventure, and I felt safe within the group. Wonderful, lifelong friendships were made. 

Happy Traveler 1
Happy Traveler 2

Very Balanced

All in all it was absolutely wonderful. There is so much to see in England that I didn’t expect us to see any more than we did—there was plenty to absorb! It felt very balanced. I loved it!! 

Happy Traveler 2
Happy Traveler 3

Like Family

I thought everyone was lovely. It felt like a big family and made goodbyes a little difficult!  Here’s to “the next time”!!!! 

Happy Traveler 3
Happy Traveler 4

Wonderful Time

I had a wonderful time on the tour and I hope to go again one day.  The ladies were just lovely and fun. 

Happy Traveler 4
Happy Traveler 5

Well-Organized

This was an excellent tour! So well-organized and so many lovely people. It was definitely a wonderful and memorable experience.  

Happy Traveler 5
Happy Traveler 6

Loved Every Minute

Thank you all for making this year’s tour such a fabulous experience. I loved every minute of it and feel very privileged to have met you all. We had a blast, didn’t we? And as usual, I think we looked wonderful in our costumes! 

Happy Traveler 6

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