A long standing strand of my research focuses on the impact of conservation, on how society engages with 'material things' and how these are, or have been, collected, interpreted and represented in museums. I am interested in exploring how conservation approaches operate as means for engaging with object-based research and the wider interpretation and presentation of cultural heritage. What can be learnt from a particular approach to assessing the evidence of change and decay and from decisions as to how these are approached? How do different approaches to display influence understanding of a particular garment and its various associations? I am particularly interested in how textiles have ‘disappeared’ from collective memory as well as the physical problems these materials present in terms of degradation and preservation, especially in relation to seventeenth-century embroideries and regenerated protein fibres.