Resources for Darning Scotland's Textile Collections

Resources for Darning Scotland's Textile Collections


This page contains resources from our textile collections and links to other useful material. We are adding content to our Issuu platform as part of the darning project.

United Turkey Red Co Ltd

United Turkey Red Co Ltd was by far the largest firm in the bleaching, finishing, dyeing and printing industry in Scotland. It was formed during the 1890s, growing naturally out of a number of occasional associations between dyeing firms in the West of Scotland and its records date back to the nineteenth century. Despite its importance little is known about the processes which went into the creation of such intricate and innovative designs. We have digitised versions of two of these books.

In 2014, Julie Wertz a PhD student at the University of Glasgow carried out research into the collection for her project Resurrecting Turkey red: Adapting a historic process for modern re-creation and analysis. As part of this she researched the sample books in the collection and created this digital version of volume 1875-1888.

Bale lables were used to mark up cloth for export and became increasingly decorative. The labels told the buyers in India, China, Japan and the West Indies whose cloth it was, who had printed it and the length and weight of it. Each print works had its own set of labels, and even after the amalgamation of firms the labels remained. We have ten examples of ticket books in the United Turkey Red collection. West Dunbartonshire Council has more information about the processes online.

J & P Coats Ltd

Founded by James Coats in Ferguslie, Paisley in the late 1820s, J. & P. Coats became one of the world’s leading thread manufacturers. By the twentieth century the company had expanded by establishing mills in North America and across Europe with over 21,000 employees in 17 production centres, 60 branch houses and 150 selling depots throughout the world.

The records of Coats Viyella Plc is a large collection and includes: minute books 1880-1985; letterbooks and correspondence 1868-1984; registers 1890-1972; general and department ledgers 1890-1933; cash books 1857-1932 and salary books 1901-1940. The online catalogue is available for further details about items.

Stoddard-Templeton Design Archive

The Stoddard Templeton Collection is one of the most significant industrial design collections in the world. Templeton’s was at the forefront of developments in applied design and technical innovation in the carpet industry throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The carpets which came out of the Scottish carpet manufacturers‘ warehouses reflected international design trends and influences. The Collection provides documentation of the period when decorative arts in Glasgow went from strength to strength, assuming international significance at the beginning of the twentieth century through the work of Charles Rennie Mackintosh.

The Design Archive collection consists of carpet designs collated over time by the various companies which came to make up Stoddard International plc. The designs were originally stored in 142 plan chest drawers, with each drawer allocated a design or artistic style title by the designers. The archive contains original design sketches and patterns, the latter having been made on squared graph paper as part of the conversion process to create woven design. A selection of around two designs from each folder was digitised to illustrate the breadth of work within the collection. This resource is split into three sections; the first two contain patterns, and then sketches. This resource may be used in conjunction with the online catalogue. To see contextual information for individual designs including size, date and design (where known), search on the reference number listed below it.

Carpet Designs and Designers: Virtual Folders Project

In 2014, we had a post-graduate placement Carpet Designs and Designers: researching, documenting and contextualising carpet designs and designers from the Stoddard Templeton Design Archive. This placement aimed to help us understand the functions and activities involved in designing and marketing high quality carpets in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. As part of this research was carried out in the following areas:

  • Carpet Designs: providing contextual histories to a variety of significant traditional and modern carpet designs, from Persian to Art Nouveau; and setting these designs in their contemporary design/art movements by providing a selection of brief case studies.
  • Carpet Designers: providing brief biographies of individual designers and design companies; and setting their work in the wider context of the design process through a selection of brief case studies.

Lin Cunningham was the student who undertook the placement and later also did a Hunterian Associate Programme project based on the collection. As part of her placement with Archives and Special Collections she produced a series of virtual folders to serve as an introduction to the Stoddard-Templeton Collection.

In these folders each design is given its catalogue reference number only –further information about the design is available from the online catalogue.

Templetonian staff magazine

The magazine was produced half-yearly by and for the employees of James Templeton & Co. carpet manufacturers, Glasgow. This digitised volume comprises the first 14 issues of the Templetonian magazine.