Totnes  Fashion & Textiles Museum

Totnes Fashion and Textiles Museum

Totnes Fashions and Textiles Museum houses the Devonshire Collection of Period Costume, which contains clothing for men, women and children from the eighteenth century to the twentyfirst century. A themed exhibition, which is changed annually, is displayed in the most intact Tudor Merchant's House in Totnes.

Find us directly opposite the market square.

Visit website

  • Eighteenth Century

    The Collection holds five silk gowns dating between c1760 and c1785. We have early cotton gowns from the end of this century. The Collection holds a couple of eighteenth century men's suits and a large number of embroidered men's waistcoats, some including metal thread and sequins or €śspangles€ť.

  • Nineteenth Century

    The Collection holds both formal and informal men's and women's wear including mourning dress wedding dress, uniform and court dress. There are even some sports clothes of the period. There are also a small number of children's and babies' clothes of this period in the Collection. Early in the century cotton is the primary material for the construction of female garments. Later, at about the time of crinoline style garments, silk and wool are re-introduced.

  • Twentieth Century

    The Collection holds a full range of garments from this period for men, women and children. A particular strength of the collection is 1920s and 1930s evening dresses and includes a coat of printed silk velvet by Mariano Fortuny. The men's collection includes uniforms from all three services.

  • Accessories

    Accessories include millinery, shawls, shoes, stockings, bags, parasols, fans, furs and gloves. The earliest item in the Collection is a pair of kid gloves of c1650 with wide gauntlets and heavily embroidered in silver.

  • Textiles

    Many garments are of interest because of the fabric from which they are made as well as for their style. Of particular interest are a collection of printed textiles made by Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher before World War Two and a group of designs by local textile printer Susan Bosence. Efforts are made to collect all types of textiles in use for garment making up to the present day.

Admission & prices

Opening days and times

Tuesday to Friday inclusive
Until 28th September 2018
11am to 5pm (last entry 4.30pm);

Outside these times and during October by prior appointment.

As we are only mounting a small exhibition this year entry is free but donations are welcome.

For more information about becoming a Friend of the Museum please click the download button below.

Find us

Museum news

View all news articles


  • Childrens activities
  • Gift Shop

There is no wheelchair access to the exhibition which is on the first floor.
Toilets and several cafes close by.

A new themed exhibiiton is displayed each summer in the most intact Tudor merchant's house in Totnes.

The 2018 exhibition will be:-

Women through the War
The impact of WW1 on how women dressed.

Come and meet our 13 women and one man whose lives changed so radically in this time. Lady Lillian is quite forbidding in her stiff Edwardian outfit. She may well have been a formidable charity worker before the war but during the war she has lent her home for convalescing officers. Daisy is enjoying her freedom on a bicycle and is,maybe, delivering letters and telegrams. Cristobel is of to a suffragette meeting in her 1910 outfit of a beautiful tailored suit with stunning hat - in suffragette colours of purple and green of course. By 1925 Sylvia is wearing a typical twenties straight-shaped outfit - so useful and comfortable to wear when working in the office or running for a bus. She may well be one of the 3 out of 4 women of this generation who never married and had to be self-sufficient.

The others are waiting for you to find out their stories when you visit the exhibition.

The Collection includes items of clothing from c1650 to the end of the C20th.

Guided tours and parties by appointment can be outside these times and during October.

Local textile crafts and Shire books are on sale along with other museum souvenirs.

Totnes Fashion and Textiles Museum
Bogan House
43 High Street

T: 01803 862857

Back to search results

Totnes Fashion and Textiles Museum

Totnes Fashion and Textiles Museum
Bogan House
43 High Street

Totnes, DEVON TQ9 5NP