Sunday, October 26, 2014


On Friday some GTA members went to Blaise castle ,which is an estate now run by Bristol City council.It houses the textile collection,which we went to see.The curator Helen told us they have approximately 12,000 items.Unfortunately it is difficult to know what as they do not have the staff to photograph and catalogue everything and add to the council website.It is a great shame that so much is locked away and rarely seen.We had an hour so she took us up to the attics and we saw,mainly female clothing and a few other items.
This was a silk brocade dress from the earliest cupboard,about 1740 I think.

Jane Austen era dress

These were capes exquisitely hand stitched.

This amazed us all,each of the hexagons are the size of the end of a pencil,all silk and finely stitched by hand!

This was an example of a chatelaine,with needle case,tiny notebook with ivory 'papers' scissors,knife,thimble,tape measure and keys.

And this a later example of a purse which would contain the same as the chatelaine.
We also saw some shoes ,fan of ostrich feathers and an umbrella.

It was worth the visit but I would like the opportunity to go back and choose some items and be able to sit and draw.We were told it is possible but there is limited room.

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