Our costume and textiles collection dates from 1689 to the present day and contains about 8,000 items. It includes costume and accessories worn by north Cumbrian people, with a focus on women's fashion, as well as collections from whole families dating from 1720 to recent times.

Highlights include a spectacular Court Mantua dress dated 1750 associated with the local 'character' Margery Jackson; a beautiful blue Arts and Crafts dressed owned by Dorothy Howard, daughter of the Radical Countess; and more recent dresses made from Carlisle Linton Tweed.

Textiles include over 45 quilts made from patchwork and wholecloth techniques. Several were made in Cumbria and incorporate local patterns and fabrics. There are also embroidered samplers, rag rugs, felts, lace, beadwork, Berlin wool work, William Morris textiles and Edinburgh Weavers internationally famous artist designed textiles made in Carlisle.


Objects in this collection