Victoria and Albert Museum

The world’s greatest museum of art and design

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The sleeve on the armour was in the worst condition (in terms of the textiles) of all the pieces that made up the armour, and required the most intricate treatment. The silk damask was very brittle and had begun to split. In some areas the fibres had been lost altogether and the metal thread was also very brittle. The conservation challenge was to stabilise these areas but with...
The thighguards are made from lacquer, lacing and silk damask. The damask was splitting in some areas and needed to be supported. First they were cleaned using a low suction museum vacuum in order to remove surface dust and particulate soiling. Then a chemical sponge was used to gently brush the surface of the leather in order to remove some of the black greasy soiling. Part of...