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The Best Textile Conservation Tools and Equipment

In anticipation of the upcoming The North American Textile Conservation Conference ‘Considering Costume’ that Willard are sponsoring in October 2023, we’re showcasing some of our best tools and equipment designed specifically for use in the conservation of textiles.

Textile Conservation Washing Table

Our renowned Willard Textile Washing Tables are made to order with a huge range of feature options so they can custom made to suit your exacting requirements. Such options include undersurface, sensor controlled heating so you can acutely control the temperature. Our tables are typically used as support and drainage platforms, with adjustable tilt, for washing and rinsing treatments on large format textiles such as wall hangings, banners, apparel etc. They may also be used for wallpaper and other large sheet materials.

Tables can be converted easily to washing tanks by mounting the detachable sides supplied with the unit. Either configuration, as washing table or washing tank, is exceedingly useful for containment and drainage when treating a number of smaller items in trays.

Find out more here.

Custom Textile Washing System

As the designers and manufactures of all Willard equipment, we regularly work with conservators to build custom equipment, including washing equipment. One such example includes a commission to design and build this very specialised washing facility required for cleaning very large wall coverings.

The large scale automated Textile Washing system measuring approximately 8m x 10m (25ft x 30ft) has a hydraulic system to enable lowering and lifting the perforated washing bed into the washing tank, whist an automatic spray boom with evenly spaced fine spray nozzles can travel the length of the tank and spray wash the object undergoing treatment.

Watch this washing system in action at Hampton Court Palace here.

Suction Cleaning and Washing Table with Acrylic Hood

The Willard Suction Cleaning & Washing Table is designed for controllable medium pressure, induced flow washing and rinsing where larger quantities of water are required. It may also be used as a large sink unit for immersion and gravity flow washing. An optional height adjustment feature also allows an optimum height to be achieved.

The acrylic hood attachment is unique to Willard and constructed using a fully bonded lightweight frameless method which provides maximum visibility whilst maintaining strength and easy handling. The hood is supplied with an opening and cover to one side as standard, facilitating the easy insertion and removal of objects. An opening and cover can be fitted to both sides of larger hoods. These are free standing and are supplied with secured carrying handles, a pressure relief valve and vapour inlet. They can also be used separately as a humidification chamber on a Willard Companion table or other suitable surface such as a work bench or a suction table with worktop fitted.

For more information view our suction cleaning and washing table and acrylic hood here.

Miniature Suction Wand

The Miniature Suction Wand is ideal for accessing restricted or precise locations requiring treatment. The Wand can be attached to a suitable suction source via a length of flexible connecting hose making this a very versatile and adaptable tool.

The model shown in the photo is produced in the size 150mm x 60mm and is available to purchase online. Our Miniature Suction Wands are built to order and can therefore be produced in different sizes to suit any specific requirement. Please get in touch to discuss your requirements and we will be happy to assist. Find out more and buy online here.

Studio Luminaire

No matter what conservation project you’re working on, having the right studio lighting is absolutely essential. Using the very latest in LED technology, our studio luminaires are fitted with colour rendering LEDs with colour render index CRI (ra) of 99 & R9 of 94 & R12 of 96.5. The featured luminaire is fitted with a fully dimmable bi-colour system comprising of both 5000K & 6500k lamps, which enables the user to select just the right colour temperature to suit a specific application via the smooth stepless dimming control.

Available in several different size combinations to suit any studio requirement, Willard Luminaires can be supplied with either floor stand, ceiling fixing, or track mounting onto the Willard track system. The Luminaire is also suitable for use with a pantograph suspension system for fall and rise height adjustment.

With ultra low energy consumption and a 50,000 hour life expectancy, our luminaires are the most sustainable choice for illuminating any studio with quality colour rendering light.

For more information on our luminaires, click here.

About the conference…

The North American Textile Conservation Conference is an international forum to share research, theory and practice in the field of textile conservation. NATCC aims to improve the quality of textile conservation through discussion of current practices and research. It does this by organising biennial conferences and publishing the papers presented there. Find out more here.


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