Conservation: Gaekwad of Baroda Uniform

Conservation: Gaekwad of Baroda Uniform

Hello im Sarah Glenn im a Textile conservator here at the V&A and i have been working on this jacket as part of the Maharajas exhibition. Its was worn by the Gaekwad of Baroda. Its made from this black moire silk and this very beautiful but very heavy gold and silver embroidery which has, the weight of it is so heavy it has been causing splits to occur through the silk which is the main conservation problem that we have to solve and because this is going on a mannequin we have to make sure the silk will hold up and that the braid doesn’t carry on splitting the silk in the same way. So what i have had to do is to make a kind of inter-lining between the actual lining and the silk itself And to get access into that i have had to undo all the original stitching, so i have undone this bit here in order to put this black silk support in between then i shall stitch around this black panel here and then stitch it in place with laid couching threads to support the splits here. I will also have to do the same thing for the arms if you can see here there are lots of splits occurring just from the weight of the braid again and i will have to do a similar thing as this back-panel, by undoing this arm seam here in order to get this silk support in between the two layers Ok, this jacket is going on display along with the pair of trousers that go with it which will also be conserved as well. Also Jenny our RCA/V&A Conservation student has worked on the helmet here. She has primarily been treating these feathers here which were very grey and dirty when we got them in the studio So dirty in fact that we weren’t entirely sure what bird they came from. So what she has been doing is very gently cleaning them with water and a tiny drop of detergent which has kind of brightened them up and we have since identified them as being swan feathers – so they will look pretty spectacular altogether on a mannequin.

3 Replies to “Conservation: Gaekwad of Baroda Uniform”

  1. I love to watch and listen to you conservators. What a treat to get to work on such precious artifacts. They are such assets to the V & A.

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