Museum of Fashion and Textiles


Museum Director:
Dr. Linda Sivils
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CTH 273

Museum of Fashion and Textiles


The Museum of Fashion and Textiles at Louisiana Tech University was established to preserve and exhibit the fashion heritage of the North Louisiana area. The collection, initiated in 1976 as a result of a donation of fifty garments from a private collection of Virginia Laskey of Ruston, was organized formally as a museum in 1983.

Conservation techniques were implemented and professional standards were emphasized. Items were cataloged as (1) fashion or costumes or accessories, (2) textiles and (3) paper: patterns, magazines, catalogs, and photographs.
Eventually, the Museum occupied the entire second floor of the Home Management Center for Research (former President’s home). In 1993, the Museum was moved across campus to Carson Taylor Hall. In 2000, the Museum inherited a vast collection from the estate of Winifred Spencer Williams, which increased the collection to over 3000 pieces.

The Museum is the only one of its type in northern Louisiana. The collections represent a comprehensive array of women’s fashions from the late 19th century and the 20th century. It is a study collection designed for learning experiences and research by the public at large, faculty, colleagues, students, individuals with private collections, local and area museums and universities.

Teaching, research, and public service have served as criteria for the philosophy of the Museum of Fashion and Textiles. The collections are an educational tool for university classes in historical costume, apparel evaluation, fashion design, and dramatic arts. Students have the opportunity to view dress from 1880 until the present.
Visual merchandising students display and exhibit selected pieces. Items from the collection, also, are used in teaching fashion pattern making, draping, or advanced design. The costumes provide an important learning experience for students.