Quilts 1700-1945


Quilts are evocative symbols of our collective past — stimulating our earliest memories of security and comfort and awakening the senses through touch and smell. They resonate with historical references, revealing the social and cultural significance of what has often been simply perceived as ‘women’s work’.

‘Quilts 1700–1945’ explores the personal and social histories embedded in both highly decorative and homemade bed covers that reveal the maker’s complex engagement with the wider world. Exploring over 200 years of British quiltmaking, every quilt has a hidden history, an unspoken story concealed within its layers. The exhibition features works from the V&A’s collection and loans from selected UK museums, as well as one of the world’s most important textiles, Rajah quilt 1841, from the National Gallery of Australia.

Opening Hours:

Mon–Fri: 10:00 am to 5:00 pm

Sat–Sun: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm

Public Holidays: 9:00 am to 5:00 pm

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