The Fashion and Textile Museum is the only museum in the UK dedicated to showcasing contemporary fashion and textile design. Founded in 2003 by icon of British design, Dame Zandra Rhodes, its original mission was to preserve the work of her contemporaries across British fashion and textile design. Over the last two decades, the Fashion and Textile Museum has broadened its mission and has now staged over 30 major exhibitions, featuring British and international designers, artists and brands, and is dedicated to the celebration and exploration of textiles, fashion and related disciplines.
However, like many cultural and historic institutions, since March 2020, the Fashion and Textile Museum has lost more than 80% of its income—an average of £32,000 per month. Because of this, the future of the Museum is now under threat and they are now urgently asking for support from the public via their Crowdfunder page.
The majority of the Fashion and Textile Museum’s income comes from visitors, learners and supporters. In line with the Government’s recently published roadmap out of lockdown, the earliest the museum will be able to open is 17 May 2021, and even then, due to social distancing, they will have to operate with reduced capacity and income. Despite the best efforts of the Fashion and Textile Musuem’s team over several national lockdowns to launch online, create an online shop, redevelop their exhibition programme and produce more digital content and events than ever before, they have found themselves with no other option than to launch their #FashionandTextilesForever appeal.
As well as presenting a diverse range of exhibitions, showcasing innovative textile design from around the world, and exploring the past, present and future of fashion and textiles, the museum also supports a wide range of independent specialists, including textile and garment conservators, design historians, freelance exhibition designers, set builders, graphic designers, textile artists and designers. Furthermore, the Fashion and Textile Museum’s education programme offers practical workshops, hands-on learning of textile and fashion-based skills, talks from academics, authors and specialists and digital skills training, all based in their beautiful and distinctive building on South London’s Bermondsey Street—designed by renowned Mexican architect Ricardo Legoretta and the only example of his work in the UK.
Every donation, big or small, will assist in securing the future of the Fashion and Textile Museum. The Crowdfunder campaign ends on Friday 9 April - there are only a few day left to help secure the future of the museum. Find out more here: #FashionAndTextilesForever