The Grace Melvin Textile Collection, Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow, Scotland, c1918 Add to your favourites. View associated digital content.

Collection Overview

Title: The Grace Melvin Textile Collection, Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow, Scotland, c1918 Add to your favourites. View associated digital content.

Primary Creator: Melvin, Grace (1892-1977)

Extent: 14.0 Items

Arrangement: The material is arranged in the order in which it was deposited.

Subjects: Design (arts), Embroidery (visual works), Glasgow, Scotland, Glasgow style, Textiles, The Glasgow School of Art

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

14 textile items, thought to have been designed as part of Grace Melvin's diploma show c1918.

Biographical Note

Grace Melvin (1892-1977) born in Glasgow, Scotland on May 28, 1892, studied at the Glasgow School of Art between 1907-1918. As a day pupil she studied Drawing and Painting, Design and attended Life classes. She studied embroidery under Ann Macbeth (1875-1948).

Melvin was later to become a member of staff at GSA, between 1920/1-1928/9. During this time her roles included the teaching of: lettering and illumination (Design and Decorative Art), 1920/21; lettering and illumination (Pictorial Design and methods of production), 1926/27; and the history of lettering and illumination, 1926/27.

Whilst in London, Melvin discovered the collection of ancient books and manuscripts, lettered and illuminated on vellum housed at the library of the British Museum. She received special permission to make copies of some of the works, and this art form became her passion for many years. At this time, whilst teaching at GSA, she was a scribe for the Corporation of Glasgow, and made many illuminated addresses for prominent people.

After seven years on the staff of the Glasgow School of Art, Melvin was given a two year leave of absence to travel to Vancouver, British Columbia to help organize the Design section of the new School of Art. She resigned from the Glasgow School and remained with the Vancouver School of Art until her retirement, as Head of the Department of Design, in 1952, after which time she became a full time painter. Grace Melvin's Basic Lettering for Art Students was published in 1927 in London and is still used. She has also illustrated and written books on lettering and design for the Department of Education of British Columbia. Later, she was commissioned to make The Books of Remembrance for the Canadian Engineers, which can be seen in St. Pauls Cathedral, London. Melvin illustrated several books for Marius Barbeau, travelling with him to Alaska to get authentic information and an intimate view of the West Coast Native Americans and their legends. Grace Melvin died on 8th March 1977.

Subject/Index Terms

Design (arts)
Embroidery (visual works)
Glasgow, Scotland
Glasgow style
The Glasgow School of Art

Administrative Information

Repository: GSA Archives

Access Restrictions: Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections are open for research by appointment.

Use Restrictions:

Application for permission to quote should be submitted to The Archives and Collections Centre at The Glasgow School of Art.

Reproduction subject to usual conditions: educational use and condition of documents.

Physical Access Note: There are no physical characteristics that affect the use of this material.

Appraisal Information: This material has been appraised in line with Glasgow School of Art Archives and Collections standard procedures.

Original/Copies Note: No known copies.

Related Materials: There are no related units of description.

Processing Information:

Fonds level description compiled by David Powell, Hub Project Archivist, 12 November 2001

Updated by David Powell, Hub Project Archivist, 14 May 2002

Fonds level description imported from the Archives Hub 25 August 2006

Finding Aid Revision History: Catalogue imported into Archon software and edited by Michelle Kaye, Archon Project Officer, May 2014.

Description of Contents

Sleeveless bodice, c1918,
Bag, c1918,
Child's Dress, c1918,
Needlecase, c1918,
Child's Dress, c1918,
Collar Yoke, c1918,
Drawstring Bag, c1918,
Lap Bag, c1918,
Collar, c1918,
Bag, c1918,
Baby's Coat, c1918,
Bonnet, c1918,
Mat, c1918,
Mat, c1918
GM/13, (Item) Mat, c1918 Add to your favourites. View associated digital content. 
Description: Unbleached calico sewn with pink, blue and black cotton thread, using running, buttonhole and blanket stitches.
Extent: 1 item
Reference: GM/13
Dimensions: 215 x 215 mm


Melvin, Grace

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