A schedule for documentation of clothes

“Antique objects in a museum collection are very much like rare books in a library. […] When we can translate their language, they tell us wonderful stories and reveal volumes about the past.” Linda Baumgarten

Documentation is an extended cataloging of the dress - a base for further research.

Here you find our suggested crib – for use in museums and by textile/dress historians. How close you make your description can depend on question, issue and ambition. It is difficult to know in advance what type of information you will need. Our advice is to be careful – you never know if you can see the object again. Take photos!

A ragged or worn out dress can have much to tell.

  • Information according to the catalogue, inv.nr, name, dating
  • Provenance, user, donor
  • Brief description
  • Material
  • Cutting
  • Construction including how the material, cutting and sewing techniques together form the construction of the garment.
  • Primary wear and tear or secondary use
  • Secondary changes
  • Notes on cross references between the garments
  • Questions if any e.g. is dating correct?
  • Literature, former exhibitions
  • When and by whom the documentation is made

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