a very special hankie

If you are a properly trained museums, libraries and archives person, it's probably best to look away now, as this morning I have been having a lovely time playing at textile conservation, and I'm quite certain that I haven't done anything 'by the book' at all.

This souvenir handkerchief was produced in 1894 to commemorate the opening of the Manchester Ship Canal, and it needed to be mounted and displayed for an exhibition that we are doing here at work.

Ever since visiting the Textile Conservation Centre in Hampton Court as part of my degree course over twenty years ago, I have harboured a secret desire to become a textile conservator, so it was all play and no work to bring in my needles and thread this morning, having been tasked with the job of mounting it on a backing board ready to be sent to the framers. I was very worried about not using archival quality materials or doing something irreversibly dreadful, but after a bit of self-education online, some careful preparation and a lot of teeny weeny stitches, I think that in the end it was a fairly credible effort. I thoroughly enjoyed myself anyway.

8 comments:

marigold jam said...

I'm sure you did a sterling job!

Jane

Alice said...

You make grey look so pretty:)

Wild Somerset Child said...

Brilliant. I was only thinking the other day that SOMEONE aught to do something with the really old jacobean panel we have here that is probably beyond saving; and if I touched it, the linen would fall to pieces. Can't think why the moth hasn't been at the yarn; maybe it's all the smoke and dust!

rossichka said...

I don't know anyhing about this kind of conservation. Sounds very interesting and responsible at the same time. I feel satisfaction in your words - I believe you have fulfilled your task in the best way!:) The link leads to such an interesting place - thank you!

Chrissie said...

Well done you for rising to the challenge! The thought of 'teeny weeny stitches' makes me feel anxious just to contemplate!

silverpebble said...

Oh it's absolutely beautiful - what a treasure.

Feltmaker said...

This post made me smile - hugely. I know nothing about conservation so I am glad that you do :D

Very useful skill to have!

lasninastextiles.com said...

Love your blog.