Celebrating the Fiber Arts: The Helen Geier Flynt Textile Gallery

Date: September 5, 2020 - November 29, 2020


Phone: 4137757214
Website (click here)
Historic Deerfield
80 Old Main Street
Deerfield, MA 01342

Flynt Center of Early New England Life - Helen Geier Flynt Textile Gallery

The Helen Geier Flynt Textile Gallery showcases Historic Deerfield's important collection of fashion, needlework, and domestic textiles. The core of the collection was assembled through the efforts of one of the museum's founders, Helen Geier Flynt (1895-1986). Considered one of the finest collections in America, the collection contains items dating from the late 17th century through the mid-20th century.

Rotations and thematic displays every season are set against the backdrop of four main fibers that created most textiles before the 20th century; silk, wool, cotton, and linen. Together with the museum’s historic houses, the gallery displays a portion of the roughly 8,000 items in the fashion, needlework, and domestic textile collection. The gallery helps visitors consider the aesthetic and practical choices made and used by people in Deerfield, the Connecticut River Valley, New England, England, and Europe.  

Fall 2020 brings two new themed exhibitions to Historic Deerfield’s Helen Geier Flynt Textile and Fashion Gallery:

Playing at Childhood displays rare examples of 19th-century children’s clothing and accessories to ask just how far we’ve come differentiating the dress of children from adults. Items from the museum’s collection help illustrate that despite changes in clothing, the children of the past are not so different than those of today!

Measured Results: The Tailoring Trade reveals the skill practiced by the makers of men’s clothing during the 18th and early 19th centuries. Masterpieces from the collection demonstrate the artistry needed to cut and fit garments that flattered the male figure while also adhering to the aesthetics and advice of the time. Tailors, like many craftsmen, struggled to reconcile changing tastes in fashion with their own training in earlier styles and methods.


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