Conserving Jane Carlyle’s chintz curtains

Jane Carlyle's conserved bedroom curtains at Carlyle's House

Few textiles remain at Carlyle’s House from Thomas and Jane Carlyle’s time. A pair of original chintz curtains dating from around the late 1840’s, and made by Jane Carlyle herself, went for conservation repair in 2016. Thanks to that painstaking work they are now finally hanging back in Jane’s bedroom.

The specialist conservation of the curtains resulted in a dramatic improvement in appearance and strength and they have now been rehung in Jane’s Dressing Room. This year a second pair have been conserved and are now hanging in her bedroom.

The curtains show a repeating pattern of Lily of the Valley, a favourite flower of Jane’s, with a printed floral border on the leading edge. The same floral border that was used on a pelmet. The curtains are lined with printed cotton in a repeating sprig pattern. The outer edges are finished with a striped gold silk binding.