Hannah, textile conservator
People become textile conservators through many different routes. For me, it started with an interest in history. I grew up in England and as a teenager, I volunteered at an archaeological dig every summer. At the same time, I was studying textile design at school and I was always making clothes at home as a hobby.
I decided to study for a three-year BA in Art History at the Courtauld Institute in London. Afterwards, I discovered that I could combine my interests in textiles and history by pursuing a career in conservation!
I contacted the Textile Conservation Studio at the Victoria & Albert Museum. I got a work placement there so I could gain a little experience and find out what the job involved. I then decided to continue my studies.
There are only a few courses in textile conservation anywhere in the world. I studied for a two-year (plus work placement) MPhil at the Centre for Textile Conservation in Glasgow. After that I worked at the British Museum’s conservation studio and on a tapestry conservation project in Lincolnshire, UK.