The research team

Dr Angharad Thomas

Angharad is a researcher, designer, and maker, with a focus on knitted gloves. She designs and knits for private and commercial clients, including a London menswear designer. Her gloves have been exhibited at the Bankfield Museum in Halifax, Ruthin Craft Centre and the Welsh National Eisteddfod. She is volunteer textile archivist for the collection of the Knitting & Crochet Guild (KCG) and in that role led the successful bid to the Heritage Fund for the Collection in 100 objects project and is part of the team working to make the whole KCG collection available online. Angharad has a background in academic art and design at the University of Salford, where she headed the innovative undergraduate and postgraduate courses in design, heritage and exhibition design. Her doctoral thesis examined the relationship between design and sustainability in the Welsh textile industry. She has written and published both academically and for consumer publications. Angharad read geography with geology at the University of London. She also has a postgraduate diploma in education and a masters in in knitwear and knitted fabric design on which she has worked with clients in Japan, Europe and the USA. The Holy Hands project has enabled her to fulfil her long-time interest in liturgical gloves which are always an inspiration.

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Instagram: @angharadt

Lesley O'Connell Edwards

Lesley O’Connell Edwards is an independent scholar who researches the history of handknitting, on which she has presented papers and published a number of articles in academic journals and specialist publications. Her main interests include handknitting in Tudor England, especially handknitters as an occupational group, and also the production and the trade in handknitted stockings for which she works in archives and on surviving artefacts. From 2015 to 2016, she held the Pasold/Museum of London Fellowship, which she used to examine the construction of the 16th century wool stockings in the museum. She recently completed a masters’ degree in English local history at the University of Oxford, which included a dissertation on the development of the handknitted stocking industry in late 16th century Norwich. Lesley is a former librarian, with a master’s degree in librarianship, for which she wrote a thesis on the resources available for the study of handknitting in the United Kingdom from 1950 to 1990. She successfully published the Early Knitting History Group’s Bibliography of the History of Knitting before 1600 (initiated by Richard Rutt) in Bulletin du CIETA (2000). Since then, she has continued to collect bibliographical references to pre-1600 knitting, and supplies the latest listing on request: a recent version is available on the Knitting History Forum website. Lesley edited the United Kingdom’s Knitting and Crochet Guild journal, Slipknot, between 2012 and 2017. Her first degree is in religious studies and her interest in liturgical gloves was sparked by seeing the pair at New College, University of Oxford.


Dr Sylvie Odstrčilová

Sylvie is an independent researcher in historical knitting who has studied and published on early evidence for stockings in central Europe. She also researches tablet weaving and, having examined early examples of bands in Prague, she is currently working on Byzantine and Viking material. Sylvie deciphers tablet-weaving patterns in order to reconstruct them for educational and reenactment purposes. She also puts her craft skills to good use at historical reenactments by demonstrating textile production processes from the Iron Age to the 17th century. Sylvie is a former botanist with a specialism in algae. Her experience as a phycologist gave her valuable experience in microscopic examination - a skill she now puts to good use in examining archaeological and historical textiles. Her previous professional experience includes managing her own e-commerce business. She currently works for the Strahov Library in Prague. Sylvie is a contributor to the Archaeological Textiles Review and Piecework.

Dr Jane Malcolm-Davies

Dr Jane Malcolm-Davies is associate professor of textile analysis at the Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen. She studied the CIETA textile analysis course at the Musée des Tissues in Lyon, France, undertook microscopic investigation of early modern material, and launched the Analytical Techniques for Organic Materials Studies (ATOMS) programme during her two-year postdoctoral Marie Sklodowska Curie fellowship in Denmark (2015 to 2017). Jane developed the THREAD programme (a Danish Innovation Fund Grand Solution), which used textiles as a catalyst for refugee integration. She is also co-director of The Tudor Tailor, a team of researchers who publish resources to promote the accurate reconstruction of historic dress. She worked as a consultant for heritage organisations in the UK, coordinated front-of-house training for the summer opening of Buckingham Palace for 12 years, and ran the costumed interpretation team at Hampton Court Palace from 1992 to 2004. Jane is on the editorial board of the Journal of Dress History and the Archaeological Textiles Review. Her first degree was in journalism, she holds postgraduate diplomas in heritage interpretation and law, lectures in entrepreneurship and has held several postdoctoral fellowships at Nordic and UK universities. Jane examined all the knitted caps and collected the data about them in the KEME database. She runs an ongoing Citizen Science experimental history project and continues to analyse the material from the caps. You can email her with any questions or suggestions you may have.

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Instagram: @malcolmdaviesjane