Date of Award
Master of Science
Apparel, Events and Hospitality Management
Sara B Marcketti
Since the turn of the 20th century, textiles and clothing historic (TCH) collections have inspired designers, helped teach textiles and clothing history classes, and enhanced our understanding of history and different cultures (Queen & Berger, 2007; Sauro, 2009; Marcketti, Fitzpatrick, Keist, & Kadolph, 2011). Recently, museums have begun to hold blockbuster fashion exhibits to increase foot traffic, fundraise, and reach a more diverse audience (Anderson, 2000). In light of this trend and the highly competitive museum field, it is necessary to explore the skills and knowledge that make professionals working in these specific collections successful. Thus, the purpose of this research was to understand the skills and knowledge needed to be successful in TCH collections, where professionals learned those skills and gained that knowledge, how professionals' schooling and formal training prepared them for their careers, how professionals network, and their career paths. Ten TCH collection professionals were interviewed and an internet survey was distributed to the members of Costume Society of America. Both interview and survey results indicated that knowledge of textiles and clothing, museum practices, and liberal arts were crucial to success. Skills emphasized included knowledge of textiles and clothing history, knowledge of textile science, object handling, cataloguing, and having a broad liberal arts background. Professionals advised students to intern extensively, attend conferences, and be very patient when applying for jobs.
Kamm, Caitlyn, "The museum world: Career skills and training for jobs in textile and clothing historic collections" (2012). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 12359.