Study Day: Authenticity in Culturally-Based Knitting

Saturday, March 5th 2016 10:00am - 4:00pm

Shetland Museum and Archives will host this study day on the topic of Authenticity in Culturally-based Knitting.

The event will explore definitions of ‘traditional’ in Shetland knitwear design, the promotion, branding and marketing of ‘authentic’ Shetland knitwear, and how designers and industry are helped or hindered by a strong basis in heritage. These issues have implications for other types of craft, beyond textiles.

The study day is the last event in the series Knitting in the Round: Hand-Knitted Textiles and the Economy of Craft in Scotland, organised by the School of Humanities, University of Glasgow and funded by a grant from the Royal Society of Edinburgh. (More details here) Previous events in the series included a workshop at Sanquhar on the knitted glove tradition, Knitting in Wartime, and the fourth ‘In the Loop’ Conference held in Glasgow.

This event will include a morning of illustrated talks. Speakers include:

  • Professor Lynn Abrams, author of Myth and Materiality in a Woman’s World: Shetland 1800-2000;
  • Roslyn Chapman who recently completed her PhD thesis on the knitted lace industry in Shetland;
  • Curator, Dr Carol Christiansen;
  • Frances Lennard, Senior Lecturer in Textile Conservation, University of Glasgow;
  • Rhoda Hughson, Chairman of Unst Heritage Trust;
  • Kathy Coull, wool producer on Fair Isle and Vice Chair of Shetland Tourism Association; and
  • Helen Robertson, jewellery designer.

The event will conclude with a panel discussion of the issues raised.

Download the full event programme here.

As part of the Shetland event, an exhibition will be held in the foyer of Shetland Museum and Archives on knitted lace patterns found in books published between 1840 and 1880. See exhibition event listings for details. Full details of the research and exhibition panels can be found in our research projects pages -click here for Authenticity in 'Shetland' Lace Knitting.


The event is free but booking is essential. Reservations may be made by phoning Shetland Museum and Archives on 01595 741562, or online at www.thelittleboxoffice/smaa. (or click HERE)

Watch Online

The event also will be broadcast live and available for viewing online through the Textile Collection page on this website. Viewers may contribute to the afternoon discussion by tweeting comments and questions, preceded by @ShetlandM&A or @UofGknitting. You can also email questions to:

Category: Lectures