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Dr Emily Taylor

Dr Emily Taylor
Assistant Curator, European Decorative Arts
Collection responsibility: Working with European Decorative Arts collections before 1850, specialist in fashion and textiles 1700-1900.
Research interests: Dress and identity, European sartorial cultures and global influences, performative dress and fancy dress costume, garment construction and materials, collectors and collecting.

Emily joined National Museums Scotland in 2012 and has worked across various projects, including the development and installation of the permanent Fashion & Style gallery (2016), exhibition Body Beautiful: Diversity on the Catwalk (2019) and Art Fund supported knowledge exchange project with Paxton House Trust costume collection (2021).

Emily’s research interests focus on the material culture of European fashion and textiles, including the history of their collection and representation within National Museums Scotland. She is interested in how gender intersects with power and influence in garment making and fashion cultures in the long eighteenth century. Her current focus is on how colonial socio-political moments can be read in historic garments and British fancy dress.

Emily holds a PhD from the University of Glasgow, ‘Women’s dresses from eighteenth-century Scotland: Fashion objects and identities’ (2013), which built on her MLitt from the same institution (2007). Both projects centred on material analysis of surviving garments.

In addition to her work at National Museums Scotland Emily is Secretary and Trustee of The Association of Dress Historians and Conference Officer for the Dress and Textile Specialists subject specialist network.

Book chapter: ‘Accidental Remainders: Working men’s fashion in National Museums Scotland c.1750-1950’ in Everyday Fashion in Britain Since 1600, Edited by Bethan Bide, Jade Halbert and Liz Tragenza (Bloomsbury, forthcoming)

Article: ‘Matriarchal Journeys: Identity and Generational Exchange in the Travels of Lady Grisell Baillie and Margaret Calderwood of Polton, c.1730–1757’. Scottish Historical Review, 101.2 (August 2022)

Book chapter: ‘Gendered Making and Material Knowledge: Tailors and Mantua-Makers, c. 1760–1820’, in Material Literacy in Eighteenth-Century Britain A Nation of Makers, Edited by Serena Dyer & Chloe Wigston Smith (Bloomsbury 2020, digital edition 2022)

Personality in Fashion: Case Studies of Localism in Eighteenth-century Scotland, Fashion Practice, 10:2 (2018), 213-235

View Dr Emily Taylor's ORCiD profile here.

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