Official Nebraska Government Website Nebraska State Historical Society

 Saving your treasures

Textiles

Most historic textiles are made of organic fibers including wool, cotton, linen, and silk. Modern textiles are made of natural and synthetic fibers such as nylon and polyester.

Preserving Textiles
Antique silk from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries must be handled very carefully.
The silk may be chemically unstable due to a process called "weighting." Metallic salts were added to the silk in order to add weight and body to the fabric because the fabric was sold by weight not length. The addition of the metallic salts accelerated the degradation of weighted silk leaving it brittle and fraying.

Textiles can be made using many different technologies such as weaving, knitting, and stitching. They can be decorated using embroidery, appliqué, beading, and dying.

Textiles objects include:

  • quilts
  • carpets
  • clothing
  • needlework
  • art

More Resources (pdf)
Dry Cleaning Historic Textiles

Dusting and Vacuuming
Rolling Textiles
Safe Plastics and Fabrics
Slant Boards for Quilts
Folding Textiles
Cleaning Organic Materials

 

Preservation Principles
   Identify
   Protect
   Display
   Store
   Manage
   Preserve

Types of Material
   Ceramics
   Glass
   Metals
   Wood

   Textiles
   Paper
   Paintings
   Other

Types of Objects
   Books / Bibles / Scrapbooks
   Photographs
   Works of Art
   Newspaper
   Furniture
   Firearms
   Textiles / Clothing / Uniforms
   Toys
   Tools / Mechanical / Instruments
   Dishes / Glassware / Silverware
   Jewelry
   Native American Items
   Natural History Specimens

More Resources
   Preservation Documents  (pdfs)
   Glossary of Terms
   See what we've done

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