A MEMBER of Helensburgh’s Grey Matters found something when clearing out that took him to the Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh.
Trevor Welch found some children’s dressing-up outfits from 1971 in his loft, which belonged to his late wife. He said she must have ordered them, as each outfit was posted to their home address in an envelope with a London postmark.
He donated them to Argyll and Bute TSI’s craft group, but they were too good to cut up, so Alison Gildea, of Argyll TSI, contacted the Museum of Childhood in Edinburgh and they were delighted to accept them for their collection.
Alison said: “The costumes were is perfect condition, the colours were so vibrant. It would have been a shame not to preserve these.”
A group of Grey Matters members went to Edinburgh with Trevor recently to hand them into the museum and are looking forward to going back and seeing them on display.
Lyn Wall, curator at the Museum of Childhood, was delighted to receive the colourful dressing-up outfits and thinks they will make a great addition to their display.
She said: “The Museum of Childhood has many offers of donations, for which we are very grateful. The majority of our 60,000 objects in the collections have been generously donated by people living in Scotland and further afield.
“I was excited to receive the 1971, Ray Murray-designed, paper dressing-up outfits, as we did not have anything else similar in the collection already and they are so colourful and beautifully designed that they would also be good candidates for display in the future. The colours and design are very evocative of that era and the Creative Playthings Playsuits fromform the 1960s.”
The Museum of Childhood is currently in the planning stage of a redevelopment of one of the main galleries.
Lyn explained the criteria for accepting donations,: “As we have such a large collection and limited storage space, we have to use a strict criteria for choosing which donations we accept and which we are unable to take.
“We do not collect duplicate items or those similar to things we already have. For example, we have a very strong pre-1940s collection and many christening robes and doll’s houses, so we would not be looking to collect more of these.
“People often assume we are only interested in older items, but in fact we are most interested in collecting post-1945 objects, and particularly the 1970s onwards, as this is where we have the most gaps in the collections.
“The redevelopment will give us the opportunity to display new items we have collected in the last few decades.”