How to care for your precious objects

Learn how to care for your most precious belongings, from wedding dresses and family photos to heirloom silver and porcelain with these handy guides compiled by our conservation experts.

Detail of the white silk wedding dress worn by Mary Elizabeth Williams when she married George Hammond Lucy at Charlecote Park, Warwickshire

How to care for textiles 

From wedding veils to patchwork quilts passed down the generations – the secret to caring for precious textiles and clothing is to minimise handling and exposure to light, dirt, damp and insect attack.

Books on the shelves in the State Bedroom at Kingston Lacy, Dorset.

How to care for paper and books 

From children’s drawings and mysterious maps to cigarette cards and favourite books – simple handling and storage techniques can help these fragile objects last as long as your memories. Learn how to treasure your paper and books forever with this handy guide to its care and conservation from our experts.

Ceramics

How to care for ceramics 

Discover a thing or two from National Trust experts on how to treasure your favourite ceramic and porcelain objects. From flower pots to tea services and decorative figurines, every household has them and they need looking after.

A collection of photographs at Calke Abbey, Derbyshire

How to care for photographs 

Learn how to care for your treasured family photographs and get some tips from our experts. We have about 75,000 individually catalogued photographs in our collections (and many more uncatalogued albums and archives) so their correct handling and conservation is vital.

Writing desk

How to care for furniture 

Learn what our conservation experts recommend to look our for when it comes to looking after your best or most-loved furniture, from polishing tips to handling advice.

Cleaning the silver in the Butler's Pantry at Llanerchaeron

How to care for silver 

In the depths of winter, silver objects bring much needed sparkle and shine to our interiors. But tarnish can impair the appearance of silver, diminishing its potential to create dazzling festive displays. Learn how to treasure your silver forever with this handy guide to its care and conservation from our experts.