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TRC Intensive Textile Course, 12-16 April 2017.TRC Intensive Textile Course, 12-16 April 2017.In 2020 and 2021, the TRC is again running its successful five-day intensive courses on textiles. They are being taught in Dutch or English by Dr Gillian Vogelsang-Eastwood, textile and dress historian and director of the TRC.

The courses are a mixture of theoretical and practical elements, with an emphasis on trying out the various techniques of textile production (spinning, dyeing, weaving), on holding and examining fibres, textiles and finished items, all in order to learn and understand what is happening and why various combinations take place. The aim is to make textiles less ‘frightening’ and allow people to look at a textile, from virtually any historical period or culture, and be able to understand it.

The courses are an absolute 'must' for anyone dealing with archaeological, historical and modern textiles, for designers and fashion students, as well as anyone who is seriously interested in all aspects of textile history and production, and simply wants to know and practise more. 

Over the years, the courses have attracted participants from renowned institutes such as the Rijkmuseum in Amsterdam, the British Museum in London, the Centre for Textile Research in Copenhagen, the Netherlands Forensic Institute, as well as commercial groups (Kwantum), but also enthusiasts without an institutional backing from the Netherlands and abroad, who are often just as curious and stimulating as the professionals. A personal report, written by dr. Dana Sonnenschein, who attended the course in September 2016, can be consulted by clicking here. A recent impression, written by a participant from the Museum of Fine Art in Belgrade, Serbia (November 2018), can be read here.

In 2020, the dates will be 17-21 August (in Dutch), 21-25 September, and 16-20 November. For 2021, the dates are 15-19 March, 19-23 April, 11-15 October and 15-19 November.

Fees for the full course, including the use of materials, are € 750. Those who want to attend the course, please contact the TRC

Course content:

Day 1: Fibre identification

Theory: Introduction to the different types of textile fibres (plant, animal, fur, mineral, artificial, and synthetic).

Practical: Basic fibre identification using senses, burning, staining and microscopic techniques.

Day 2: Spinning and yarns

Theory: Preparation and spinning of main types of natural fibres; the basic spinning techniques: hand spinning; wheel (spindle, spinning); machine spinning.

Practical: Hand spinning and wheel spinning; identification of the main types of spun yarns.

Day 2 (late afternoon): Dyes and dyeing:

Theory: Introduction to the main types of plant, animal, mineral, synthetic dyes and dyeing techniques.

Day 3: Weaves and weaving

Theory: Introduction tothe main types of hand and machine looms (flat, vertical, backstraptreddle, warp-weighted, draw, jacquard, etc; introduction to the main types of weaves and finishes).

Practical: Identification of the main types of weaves; drawing a simple weave graph; working with different types of simple looms to reconstruct the weaves just looked at.

Day 4 (morning): Weaves and weaving (cont.)

Day 4 (afternoon): Non-woven materials

Theory: Introduction to the main forms of non-woven materials: leather,felt, knitted, crochet, braids, laces, etc.

Practical: Identification of the basic non-woven forms; basic felt making.

Day 5: Decorative techniques

Theory: Introduction to the main forms of decorative techniques:(a) printed (batik, block, plate, roller, screen; computer); (b) applied (appliqué; embroidery; braids, bands and tassels; sequins, spangles, beads; etc).

Practical: Identification of the basic forms of decoration.

  • Dates in 2020: 17-21 August; 21-25 September; 16-20 November
  • Dates in 2021: 15-19 March; 19-23 April; 11-15 October and 15-19 November.
  • Time: 09.00 - 16.30, incl. lunch and coffee breaks.
  • Max. number of participants: 8 (5 for the August course)
  • Min.number of participants: 5
  • Course language: English (the course in August 2020 is given in Dutch)
  • Costs: € 750 (half of which to be transferred in advance); for the courses in 2020, full fees to be paid at the latest by the first day of the course
  • Provided: Equipment, samples, handouts, tea and coffee
  • Not provided: lunches
  • Location: TRC, Hogewoerd 164, 2311 HW Leiden, The Netherlands
  • Registration: please send an email to the TRC: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We will contact you with further details.
  • For further information: Textile Research Centre, Hogewoerd 164, 2311 HW Leiden, The Netherlands. Tel. +31 (0)71 5134144 / +31 (0)6 28830428;  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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Hogewoerd 164
2311 HW Leiden.
Tel. +31 (0)71 5134144 /
+31 (0)6 28830428  

The TRC is open again from Tuesday, 2nd June, but by appointment only.

Bank account number:
NL39 INGB 0002 9823 59,
Stichting Textile Research Centre

TRC Gallery exhibition:
5 Febr. -27 August 2020: American Quilts

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The TRC is dependent on project support and individual donations. All of our work is being carried out by volunteers. To support the TRC activities, we therefore welcome your financial assistance: donations can be transferred to bank account number NL39 INGB 000 298 2359, in the name of the Stichting Textile Research Centre.
Since the TRC is officially recognised as a non-profit making cultural institution (ANBI), donations are tax deductible for 125% for individuals, and 150% for commercial companies. For more information, click here
Financial donations to the TRC can also be made via Paypal: