Catherine Harris, one of our team members, is studying Textile Conservation, alongside her work with Selvedge. She puts together our series of workshops and socials and helps organise our newly launched textile tours. Here, Catherine gives us an insight into the work of a textile conservator.
Of all the professions working with textiles, textile conservation is unique. It requires a great breadth of skill, from manual dexterity, academic and scientific knowledge, cultural awareness to aesthetic sensitivity. Textile conservation not only conserves physical objects but the histories, memories and the social context in which an object was made, worn and survived. Textile conservators work directly with objects of cultural value with a responsibility to retain their material and cultural significance. Usually working within a collection cares team, textile conservators remain important cultural custodians.