Textile Research Centre (TRC) Leiden

The Textile Research Centre (TRC) was set up in 1991 and is housed in the centre of historic Leiden, The Netherlands.

Hogewoerd 164 Leiden, Netherlands

Museum Website

The Textile Research Centre (TRC) was set up in 1991 as an independent foundation. Since 2009 it is housed at Hogewoerd 164, in the centre of historic Leiden, The Netherlands. Here it has the use of an exhibition space, a large depot, offices and workrooms. The basic aim of the TRC is to give the study of textiles, clothing and accessories their proper place in the field of the humanities and social sciences. The TRC does so by providing courses and lectures, carrying out research and by the presentation of textiles and dress from all over the world. The two main focal paints of the TRC are (a) dress and identity: what people wear in order to say who they are and (b) pre-industrial textile technology.

THE TRC has various collections, including a Textile and Garment Collection and a Reference Collection for fibres, threads, dyes, weaves, and so forth.

The TRC collection of textiles, garments and accessories includes items from all over the world, literally from the Andes, via Zanzibar, to Japan. The collection now includes more than 33000 items and is still growing. The objects are used for research, teaching, exhibitions and publications. The catalogue is published on line, with photographs and a brief description of all the items. These items are open access and can be used free of charge as long as the name of the TRC Leiden is mentioned.

In addition, research is aided by the TRC’s library (some 4000 books, a large collection of articles, as well as visual material such as photographs, prints and postcards). Students, designers and academics come from many countries to Leiden to use the TRC’s facilities and to attend workshops and courses. In addition, one of the aims of the TRC is to have a quilt and quilting centre where people can learn about and actively enjoy quilts and quilting, as well as carry out research into this ancient textile technique that has been practised for over 2500 years.