Museums

Museums and other places to visit

Most museums display only a fraction of their collections at any one time. We have to rely on their associated website to see the extent of their holdings and to check that a certain item is actually currently on display before taking the time to visit.

This list is by no means exhaustive, if you know of others which may be of interest do let us know by contacting our Guild Secretary by email

Fashion Museum, Bath is one of the world's great museum collections of historic and fashionable dress. The museum also holds an extensive archive of knitting and crochet magazines and patterns. Anyone can view anything from the collection or the archive by booking a self-directed session in the Study Facilities, just email with details of your interest. Study sessions are available on Thursdays from 11.00 am - 1.00 pm and 2.00 - 4.00 pm.

Framework Knitters Museum, Nottingham lets you step back into another era, visit this Victorian time-capsule and see how the knitters lived and worked.

Future Museum, South West Scotland a collaboration between the local council and independent museums in SW Scotland and provides free access to the collections via its website. Plenty of information on Sanquhar knitting, patterns, images etc.

Gallery of Costume, Platt Hall Manchester has a examples of knitwear in it's collection and in 2013 hosted an exhibition - Knitted Elegance: Creative Fashion since the 1950s

Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston has important collections and exhibitions of costume and textiles.

Museum of London has some modern pieces as well as a host of historic items, tudor caps, mittens etc. You may be interested to know that our Slipknot editor Lesley O'Connell-Edwards was awarded the Pasold/Museum of London Fellowship 2015 and will be looking at the Museum's collection of 16th century knitting in detail.

The Shetland Museum as well as Shetland lace and Fair Isle garments has an extensive photo library giving plenty of information on history and lifestyles on the islands.

University of Southampton is home to The Knitting Reference Library (KRL) which includes the published works collected by Montse Stanley, Richard Rutt and Jane Waller. These comprise books, exhibition catalogues, knitting patterns, journals and magazines. Many of the items from Richard Rutt's collection can be viewed online.

Victoria & Albert Museum has a world famous collection of all decorative arts & textiles, including knitting. Items from the textile galleries at the museum have been moved to the new Clothworkers Centre at Blythe House

The Guild has arranged visits to the Clothworkers Centre to view selected items from the V&A collection which are in storage there, so if you would like to participate in the future please contact our Membership Secretary by email