Textile Conservator

Preserve gowns, tapestries, and other fabric-based museum pieces.

What does a Textile Conservator do?

If you’re fascinated by fine art, antiques, and period dresses, then you’ll thrive as a textile conservator. Textile conservation is a highly specialized job which involves the preservation and protection of fine antiquities and artifacts found mostly in museums. These items include such pieces as tapestries, clothing, and fragile documents. A textile conservator is a key member of a small conservation team, using state-of-the-art processes to treat, restore, and clean the pieces they’re working on.

Your projects as a textile conservator involve restoring items ranging from delicate silk dresses to original Victorian furniture—pieces that have a lot of rich history behind them. So it’s vital that you develop technical expertise as well as a thorough understanding of the historical and cultural importance of the items you’re working on. These relics are very valuable and irreplaceable, so you also need to know how to safely store and transport them.

In addition, depending on the needs of the gallery, and at the direction of the museum curator, you may be asked to prepare and arrange exhibit materials within the collection. And you may also be required to train and supervise interns and volunteers in doing these tasks.