Artwork © Andre Lanoux 2015. Commissioned by Edward Maeder.

Karen Finch (OBE, D.Litt, FIIC, FRSA) was a leading advocate for textile conservation worldwide, transforming the profession through her teaching, workroom practice and writing. She founded the Textile Conservation Centre which became a leading institute for education and research, where pioneering advances were made in the remedial conservation of tapestries, painted silk banners, upholstered furniture and archaeological textiles.

Karen’s aim that conservation should preserve historical information led to a strong emphasis on technical documentation and preventative care. She believed in a collaborative approach bringing together conservators, curators and scientists in the understanding of textiles as historical documents.

Karen’s textile pursuits were broad; her personal engagement with textiles started with design and weaving, leading on to a profound interest in historical techniques and the meaning of textiles in daily life.

Latest blog posts

Latest features

Contributing to the site


We are very excited to offer a voice to all visitors to this site. The forum allows visitors to share their memories of Karen or engage in discussion about the wider world of textile conservation.


Visitors are also encouraged to use the comments sections found at the bottom of each blog post and feature (articles, interviews, tributes, conservation projects) to share relevant thoughts and feedback.

Recent posts on the forum

Recent comments

  • Thank you Auntie Ruth for that story which I can supplement. Our son Jacob is also a Sunday’s child and when he was 4 years old, he fell into an open air swimming pool in South Africa, His parents didn’t notice but his older brother, Joshua, at 10 years old, jumped in immediately and pulled him out. I suppose the lesson here is despite potential drownings of our Sunday-born-family members, lucky fate intervenes and preserves your lives. Thank goodness. Katrina Katrina Finch on “A little bit adventurous”: a few of Karen’s early memories May 14th, 2021 ● 2:49pm
  • I, too, am a Sunday’s child. You will understand that, when you read on and see, that in the end I was lucky : I used to play in the stable, where the cows were housed. There was a long passage between the two rows of cows. They had their behinds out to the passage, which was nicely covered with yellow tiles. There was room for leading away their urine to a subterranean container, before the tiles. The tiles were fine for riding there on my three-wheeled bike. Full speed. Only one day the lid was not on over the container to collect the urine from the cows. I speeded into it on the bike. The bike saved me, because it was stuck near the surface of the container, so they could get me up. After their first shock, their reaction was to tease me, because I had smelled. Ruth Sinding on “A little bit adventurous”: a few of Karen’s early memories May 13th, 2021 ● 7:22pm
  • This is great, Katrina and Alan! I sent you an e-mail. Have a look at it and see, if you can use it. Ruth on Karen Finch’s centenary, 8th May 2021 May 4th, 2021 ● 12:39pm
  • I am reading letters that my mother Kristine Andersen, nee Kaae, kept and translating them into English. One is from her cousin Andrea Thomsen sent from Skive Sanatoriet dated August 11, 1919. They were very close and lived in Tvede near Randers. Andrea died of TB perhaps in 1922 or earlier. I was glad to see the photo of the sanatorium. It’s amazing what one fines on the Internet when I searched for Skive Sanatorium. Best wishes. Kenneth K. Andersen on 1947–1959: Learning her trade March 2nd, 2021 ● 3:29pm
  • Hallo Lisbeth – thank you for your comments Lisbeth – so appreciated. I expect you have since found out that you don’t need to register to simply view the website – only if you want to make a comment. Katrina Katrina Finch on Karen’s room August 7th, 2020 ● 3:12pm