Throughout her life, Hélène Costa, Jean-François Costa's wife (former President of the Fragornard perfume factory), was true to Provence and its traditions, from culture to the culinary arts. Her one desire was to share that passion.
As a young girl, Hélène Costa was a member of the Académie de Provence; it was a tremendous opportunity for her to put on the magnificent antique costumes embroidered by her Great-Aunt Adelaïde. She loved wearing them to ceremonies and traditional festivities held to the sound of the pipes and the tambori.
In the early 1990s, when her three daughters, Francoise, Anne and Agnès had flown the nest to study at the Universities of Nice and Paris, she re-immersed herself in the wonderful world of Provencal costume and jewelry. Soon her exciting interest prompted her to drive alone to Marseilles, Arles, Avignon and Nimes to buy embroidered underskirts, capes, intricate scarves and authentic antique jewelry.
She formed friendships with other enthusiasts and built up an extraordinary collection of items that are now exhibited at the Provençal Costume and Jewelry Museum in Grasse, in the private mansion located at the entrance to the old town.
On the agenda is a medley of extremely iconic and rare pieces. Bold prints and colors are given a place of honor and feature many items which have been worn by Agnès Costa herself. Visitors will discover fifteen or so complete outfits from wedding gowns to peasant costumes, with paisley print, large floral motif fabrics, aprons, embroidered underskirts, Bastidante caracos, etc… Genuine Provencal wardrobes dedicated to the collections belonging to her husband, Jean-Francois Costa. Chateleine chains, ‘poissarde’ earrings and cape buckles are also featured.
Open every day from 10am to 6pm