First World War embroidered postcards

Embroidered postcard from the First World War (TRC 2015.0431).

Embroidered postcard from the First World War (TRC 2015.0431).

One hundred years ago, on the 11th November 1918, there came an end to the massacres of the First World War (1914-1918). Many soldiers, on both sides of the conflict, kept in touch with family and friends back home by letters and postcards. One of the more popular forms of postcards were decorated with embroidery. An article of today's BBC news service tells about eight brothers from a Birmingham family, who all served in the British army. One of them did not return. The brothers sent embroidered postcards back to England. Click here to read this fascinating story.

One of the TRC digital exhibitions is about the First World War embroidered postcards. You can see it by clicking here. There is also a more personal account by Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood, the TRC director, about her grandfather's experiences. This is included in the TRC blogs (click here). 

 

 

 

 

 

November Newsletter TRC Silk Stockings Project

TRC Silk Stockings Project: Samples made by the volunteers

TRC Silk Stockings Project: Samples made by the volunteers

A Newsletter, in Dutch and English, on the progress of the TRC Silk Stockings Project, which relates to the reconstruction of silk stockings recently discovered in a seventeenth century shipwreck found off the coast of the island of Texel in the north of The Netherlands, was published on 8th November 2018 and can be read here or click on the illustration. The project is sponsored by the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TRC Intensive Textile Course, 19-23 November 2018. Still two places available.

Photograph taken at the TRC Intensive Textile Course in April 2017.

Photograph taken at the TRC Intensive Textile Course in April 2017.

From 19-23 November 2018, the TRC will be running again its successful five-day intensive course on textiles. The course is being taught in English by Dr Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood, textile and dress historian and director of the TRC. The course is a mixture of theoretical and practical elements, with an emphasis on trying out the various techniques of textile production (spinning, dyeing, weaving), on holding and examining fibres, textiles and finished items, all in order to learn and understand what is happening and why various combinations take place. The aim is to make textiles less ‘frightening’ and allow people to look at a textile, from virtually any historical period or culture, and be able to understand it. The course is an absolute 'must' for anyone dealing with archaeological, historical and modern textiles, for designers and fashion students, as well as anyone who is seriously interested in all aspects of textile history and production, and simply wants to know and practise more. 

Read more: TRC Intensive Textile Course, 19-23 November 2018. Still two places available.

 

New TRC Gallery exhibition: Resist printing and dyeing with indigo. From 7 to 28 November

Georg Stark in his indigo workshop.

Georg Stark in his indigo workshop.

The German indigo dyer, Georg Stark, and the Textile Research Centre in Leiden, the Netherlands, have organised an exhibition about an intriguing aspect of shared Dutch-German cultural heritage, namely that of resist printing and dyeing with indigo. The exhibition has been set up with the assistance of the local government of Niedersachsen, Hannover, in Germany.

The old craft of indigo dyeing has been added to the UNESCO list of German cultural heritage and is being supported at various levels and manners. Georg Stark himself has been recognised as an UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage craftsman (for indigo). In the Netherlands, however, the situation is different. Some thirty years ago the last indigo workshop (in Staphorst) closed down. This was all the more unfortunate, since the first indigo dyer in Europe happened to be a Dutchman. In 1671, Jacob ter Gouw opened the first indigo workshop in his native town of Amersfoort.

 

Read more: New TRC Gallery exhibition: Resist printing and dyeing with indigo. From 7 to 28 November

 

Hanging by a sleeve

Beverley Bennett sewing on sleeves for the quilts (TRC October 2018).

Beverley Bennett sewing on sleeves for the quilts (TRC October 2018).

Beverley Bennett, a TRC volunteer, reports on her work with the American quilts recently donated to the TRC (Monday, 8th October 2018):

Sherry’s American Quilts is the current exhibition at the TRC and I have taken on the task of making ‘hanging sleeves’ for some of the quilts. Why is this necessary? Well, quilts were made for beds – mostly for the warmth that the three layers (top, bottom and some form of ‘padding’) provided. However, they soon became decorative objects in their own right.

Striving to be the best at making quilts led to competitions at County and State Fairs, where quilters would show their work and compete for first place and a blue ribbon – later there were larger quilt contests where cash prizes could be won. Today there are huge Quilt Shows with prizes for every category that you can think of.

Read more: Hanging by a sleeve

 

New acquisitions for the TRC collection

Hand embroidered bride's dress from 19th century China, decorated with wisteria flowers woven in a delicate tapestry weave (TRC 2018.2840).

Hand embroidered bride's dress from 19th century China, decorated with wisteria flowers woven in a delicate tapestry weave (TRC 2018.2840).

Saturday 8th September. Gillian Vogelsang, director TRC, writes:

The last two weeks has seen a very diverse group of textiles and garments being donated to the TRC Leiden. These include nineteenth century Chinese garments, some of them for court officials, another for a bride, and also a number of Zoroastrian textiles and garments from Yazd in Iran and dating to the early 20th century (see below). The Zoroastrian garments are part of a donation by the Katayoun Keyani and Mehraban Bondarian family in America.

There is also a group of Peruvian hand knitted caps form the 1970’s (compare TRC 2018.2913). Some of these will appear in the TRC’s exhibition about hand knitting, planned for the autumn of 2019. And from the Indian subcontinent we received a donation of ralli quilts from Pakistan/western India, and these date from the 1960’s and 70’s (compare TRC 2018.2896, TRC 2018.2897, TRC 2018.2898 and TRC 2018.2899).

Read more: New acquisitions for the TRC collection

 

Quiltnieuws article about the TRC

The September 2018 issue of the Dutch journal Quiltnieuws includes an article about the TRC. Please click here to download the article in PdF format.

 

Encyclopedia of Embroidery Series update

Preparations for Vol. 8 of the Encyclopedia of Embroidery series, covering the Antarctic, are already well advanced. Martin Hense, the draughtsman for the full series, just completed the first illustration.

Preparations for Vol. 8 of the Encyclopedia of Embroidery series, covering the Antarctic, are already well advanced. Martin Hense, the draughtsman for the full series, just completed the first illustration.

During the last few months the Encyclopedia of World Embroidery series (Bloomsbury Publishing, London), has been gaining momentum. The first volume on embroidery from the Arab World came out in 2016 (see here) and to everyone’s pleasure won the prestigious international award, the Dartmouth Medal.

Since then we have been working hard on volume 2, which is about embroidery from Central Asia, the Iranian Plateau and the Indian subcontinent (see here). The manuscript for this volume has gone to Bloomsbury and the book should appear by the end of 2019. Once again many people have been helping with advice, suggestions and with providing actual examples of embroidery.

For the next few years, we are planning the following volumes: 3 – Scandinavia and Western Europe; 4 – East and Southeast Asia; 5 – Eastern Europe and Russia; 6- Sub-Saharan Africa; 7- The Americas. 

 

Read more: Encyclopedia of Embroidery Series update

 

NewTextileBooks May 2018

The number of textile books being produced is steadily increasing and it is clear from the range of subjects covered in the following list that authors from diverse academic and non-academic backgrounds have become involved in placing textiles and dress within their well-earned positions in cultural studies - in all its many forms. To make it easier for the reader, the TRC librarians are in the process of putting all the recommended books, discussed in the preceding years, into a single list based on author and title, which will then be linked to the TRC Library catalogue. Anyhow, below is a varied list of some of the publications recently added to the TRC library. For the online catalogue of the library, click here. For the list of reviews published in December last year, click here.

 

Support the TRC

The TRC is dependent on the external financing of specific projects as well as private donations. All the work the TRC is doing is carried out by volunteers, but the building, office equipment etc., all have to be paid for.

To support the TRC, we would like to ask for your support. Donations can be transferred to our bank account NL39 INGB 000 298 2359, in the name of the Stichting Textile Research Centre. The TRC is officially registred as an Algemeen Nut Beogende Instelling (ANBI) and in addition as a Culturele Instelling ('Cultural Institution'). Private donations are therefore tax deductible in the Netherlands for up to 125%, and donations by companies for up to 150%.

 

TRC online exhibitions

Appliqué from the Street of the Tentmakers, Cairo. TRC 2015.0560.

Appliqué from the Street of the Tentmakers, Cairo. TRC 2015.0560.

The TRC is very proud to publish the first nine of a planned series of online exhibitions, which will highlight some of the fascinating textiles and garments in the TRC collection. Please have a look and enjoy.

The nine titles are:

 

 

 

TRC SHOP

The Textile Research Centre wants to stimulate people to discover the fascinating World of Textiles and Dress. The TRC therefore is gradually expanding its shop and its range of products. You can buy new and secondhand books on textiles and dress, including Dutch regional dress, but also on the history of fashion, and 'how-to-do' subjects. The shop has craft items from all over the world, in particular handmade jewellery. There are woven Syrian sheep bands, knitted objects from Peru, embroidered Turkish lavender bags with oya decoration, gaudily decorated caps from Afghanistan, and many other beautiful and interesting objects. We also sell a wide range of picture postcards of textiles and costume.

The shop also sells collection care items, including acid free paper and boxes for storing your delicate textiles and articles of dress, rolls for more compact storage of long textile items, heads and wigs for display purposes, etc. The TRC sells a range of tools, materials and threads for spinning, crochet, embroidery, hairpin lace production, and silk cocoons for making silk paper.

A new line in this assortment is a wide range of beads for making or restoring Dutch regional dress items, including imitation garnets, blood coral and jet, plus all sorts of metal and glass seed beads for embroidery. You are very welcome to visit the TRC shop at our premises along the Hogewoerd.

 

Embroidery charts

We recently put some embroidery charts online for some unusual and intriguing needlework patterns from the eastern and northern parts of Europe. Int the next few months, we hope to publish more. Please click here for an Hungarian cushion covertwo cross-stitch patterns for ecclesiastical garmentsan Hungarian/Romanian geometric design, a deer design from Eastern Europe, a simple blouse design from Romania, and a rabbits and birds design originally for a beadwork panel, also from Hungary. You can use them as you wish. Enjoy !

 

The diversity of the TRC collection

Indian batik for a sari

Indian batik for a sari

The TRC collection of textiles, clothing and accessories from around the world was started in 1997 with 43 pieces from Afghanistan, Egypt and Syria. Since then it has grown to over twenty-two thousand items (November 2018), which come from very diverse backgrounds with respect to time and place. Some of the items in the collection have been purchased, but the vast majority has been very kindly donated by various institutions and private donors.

The collection has no boundaries with respect to geography and time. It ranges from Afghan embroidery, German Lederhosen, Indonesian batiks, to delicate silks from Renaissance Italy and spinning and weaving equipment from the Andes. The collection is being built up around four major themes: Pre-Industrial textile technology, including a wide range of spinning and weaving equipment and textiles from around the world; Decorative needlework, with an emphasis on hand embroidery from around the world; Dutch regional dress; Modern Europan printed textile designs, and North African and Middle Eastern textiles and dress.

All of the pieces in the TRC collection have been catalogued, and are currently being incorporated into the TRC Digital Collection Database.  By March 2018, more than half of the collection has been photographed and described. To give an idea of the range and depth of the collection, below we present a broad outline of some of the most important and intriguing elements of the collection. 

Read more: The diversity of the TRC collection

 

Search in the TRC website

Donations

 
Financial donations to the TRC can be made via Paypal; Donaties aan de TRC kunnen worden overgemaakt via Paypal:
 
 

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TRC in a nutshell

Hogewoerd 164, 2311 HW Leiden. Tel. +31 (0)71 5134144 / +31 (0)6 28830428   info@trc-leiden.nl

Opening times: Monday to Thursday: 10.00-16.00 hrs, other days by appointment.

Bank account number: NL39 INGB 0002 9823 59

Entrance is free, but donations are always welcome !

TRC Gallery exhibition: 7-28 November: Resist printing and dyeing with indigo

facebook 2015 logo detail

 

 

Donations

The TRC is dependent on project support and individual donations. All of our work is being carried out by volunteers. To support the TRC activities, we therefore welcome your financial assistance: donations can be transferred to bank account number NL39 INGB 000 298 2359, in the name of the Textile Research Centre, Leiden. Since the TRC is officially recognised as a non-profit making cultural institution (ANBI), donations are tax deductible for 125% for individuals, and 150% for commercial companies. For more information, click here
 
Financial donations to the TRC can be made via Paypal: