We are more than half way through our summer season. If you haven't been in this year, make sure you call in to see our re-designed top floor.
Exciting demonstration day
On 18 August, we had a busy day of demonstrations, as well as the opportunity to participate in Drawn Together Wales project with Amy Sterly so there was plenty of action. Katherine Keatley again brought her version of an early loom using drop weights and simple equipment, together with hand-dyed wool using natural dyes. Stephanie Kemp was warping up a simple loom we had been given by Fibre East, that visitors will be able to use, and Shirley from Slender Threads Workshop was there to teach us the basics of spinning. It was great to see so many visitors, and children who came to watch and to try out various things.
Make sure you don't miss our next demonstration event on September 16, the last for the summer season.
Another exciting day will be on Saturday 25 August, when Geraint will be at the museum. See below for more.
The first talk we have arranged, in what we hope will be a series, will be held at the Museum on 30 August.
Michael Freeman, an expert on Welsh Costumes will give a talk with illustrations, on the subject. How common were the tall black hats? How much variety was there between different parts of Wales? Come and join us to find out.
As space will be limited, it will be necessary to reserve a seat. Email us here, or through the Contact Us page, and pay at the door on the day.
The other month-long 'special' in September will be Wonderwool's Curtain of Poppies which will be in the Museum. Check out their website here It should be great.
We have a steady stream of groups who come for tours in the museum . Our expert guides tell the groups all about the industrial history of Newtown as well as point out some of our special exhibits. Find out how to organise a tour for your group here.
We have started working with local schools. Some of the children of Penygloddfa school visited us in May to learn something of the social history of the area. More recently children from Hafren School also spent time in the Museum. A group of students from the Newtown College came in to see us too. We plan to encourage more schools to take part in 2019. If you think your school might be interested, do contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks to the generous grants and funding we have received we have been able to proceed with the following projects:
- Upgrading the top floor displays
- Conserving the scale model of the building
- Carrying out Phase 2 of our Conservation Audit
- Carrying out a Collection and Documentation Audit
- Move on to the next stage of work in conserving the building.
Check out those who have helped fund our work here.
At the Museum we have a great collection of clog making equipment including tools, and workbenches together with finished clogs and patterns.
In March, Geraint Parfitt (on the left) one of the last Welsh clog makers who works from his shop at St Fagans Museum of Welsh life visited Newtown to appraise and advise us on the best way to display our collection. His enthusiasm inspired us and we hope you will enjoy our new clog makers shop on the top floor.
Clog dancing originated from the patterns weavers made as they moved their feet on the loom pedals and the word clog derives from the mud accumulating on the footwear of the workers.
Geraint will be at the Textile Museum on 25 August demonstrating clog making during our normal opening hours. He will be working in the courtyard so we hope for a fine day!
Don't miss it.
New exhibition for 2018
One corner of the top floor will now be dedicated to special exhibitions. This year the focus is on Welsh costumes over the years. Do make a point of coming to read all about it, and see the examples on display. See above for details of a talk on the subject by Michael Freeman on 30 August.
Crimean military quilt
There is a picture hanging in the Royal College of Surgeons of a man sitting in bed sewing a quilt. His quilt was made of triangles, while the one on display at the Museum is tiny squares of densely woven worsted used in the production of military uniforms, predominantly red.
Soldiers were encouraged to take up needlework as a form of therapy for those injured in conflict and recuperating in hospital. An heirloom from the great great grandfather of our curator, this glorious woollen quilt is a reminder of the therapy of craft work. It is on loan.
Marvel at the stitching and regularity of the quilting. We now have postcards of this picture for sale
Demonstrations get even more hands on
Thanks to Fibre-East we now have a good supply of niddy-noddies (for winding yarn into a skein), drop spindles and hand carders, and an extra loom so that our visitors can be more hands on when watching the demonstrators. Check out Fibre-East's website if you are interested in attending their events featuring natural fibre and craft.
We are very grateful for Fibre-East's help.