Alison Mayne

Research Fellow 2020 supported by The William Lind Foundation

Dr Alison Mayne is a researcher in handcraft, wellbeing, adoption and adaptation of social media platforms, everyday textiles and ethics in academic practice. Her PhD explored the different ways that amateur making in knit and crochet - crafted alone and shared on Facebook - could have implications for subjective perceptions of wellbeing. She has also spoken and written on representation of knit on Instagram, remaking historical C20th clothing, fashion in Spare Rib magazine and her own amateur textile practice. Current work is focused on the affective properties of Scottish yarn, contemporary amateur makers’ relationship with small scale independent yarn businesses based in Scotland and the Hope MacDougall textile archive at Dunollie Castle and Museum.

I am delighted to have the opportunity to undertake research this year as a University of Glasgow Visiting Library Fellow, supported by the William Lind Foundation. It will allow me to investigate the papers of James Porteous & Co of Meadow Mills, Alva in Clackmannanshire to see what the story of this single mill can tell us about the wider context of woollen manufacture in Scotland. Like many such mills across the country, a boom in the mid/late C19th was followed by collapse by the 1960s. Studying documents held in the university collections will illustrate patterns of employment in the factory and for home-based loom weavers, sources of raw materials, popular designs and shareholders’ concerns set against the context of the National Association of Scottish Wool Manufacture.