Highlights of the collections at Packwood House

En-suite bathroom at Packwood House, Warwickshire

Although Packwood is justifiably famous for its wonderful tapestries, there are many other items to see too. There are a huge number of beautiful items in the collection, ranging from exquisite painted stained glass dating from the 16th century, to a whole 1930s bathroom lined with old delft tiles.

Stained glass windows

Almost every window at Packwood House has a panel of stained glass. There are a number of unusual ones, and an unusual example from the early 17th century that depicts a ship - there are not many examples known in the world like this. 

A Jacobean four poster bed

This bed is actually made up of two different beds, fixed together in the 17th century. This is where General Ireton was said to have slept before the Battle of Edgehill in 1642.
It has ropes to hold the mattress that could be tightened in order to make the bed more comfortable - this is the origin of the phrase 'goodnight, sleep tight'. 

Bargello needlework

Bargello is a type of needlepoint embroidery consisting of upright flat stitches of a geometrical design, named after the Bargello Palace in Florence, where there are fine examples.
It is a very challenging way of stitching as it's important to count the stitches correctly - mistakes are very noticeable. 

Judith with the Head of Holofernes

Sometimes tiny tapestries were created rather than wall-sized examples. They are even more detailed and intricate, and this one in our collection is woven with gold thread.
This was probably woven locally at Barcheston, Warwickshire and dates from the late 16th century. 

The artist's lay figure

If you look closely you'll notice that this one has two heads. This dressed mannequin was originally an artist's lay figure, a very rare item.
Used as a model for poor struggling artists to draw, she could have been hired for £1 a month - a human model would have demanded £3 a week.
She has a papier-mâché head and wears a wig. She now sits in a sedan chair and has been beautifully dressed in an eclectic mix of 18th, 19th and 20th century garments with beautiful green shoes.