12 days till Christmas: Visit a museum or art gallery

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I love visiting museums and art galleries. They’re full of fantastic stuff and we are so incredibly lucky in Britain that many museums are free to visit. The spate of free time over the Christmas holidays is a perfect opportunity to pop into your local gallery, or indeed to travel further afield to make a truly world class museum your aim.

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For quilters, museums and galleries are a treasure trove of inspiration. Colours and patterns can be found in so many ways. I am constantly amazed at the ingenuity of human creativity. Here are just some of my favourite museums:

The Victoria & Albert Museum in London has probably got the most wide-ranging collection of craft and art items in the world and its gift shop stocks fabric! The British Museum’s international collection is endlessly fascinating. Fashion enthusiasts will love the Fashion Museum in Bath, which has a huge historical and contemporary collection. The nearby American Museum has a collection of quilts and hosts a different quilt group every week throughout the year. I LOVE the dinky Fashion and Textile Museum in London, which manages to use a tiny space astonishingly well, hosting  the most excellent exhibitions. The Bowes Museum in Barnard Castle, near Durham, has an exquisite collection which includes textiles, quilts and costumes.

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But there are so many lovely local galleries that are all worthy of a visit. The pictures at the top and bottom of this post are from York Art Gallery‘s recently refurbished Centre of Ceramic Art. The others are of 15th century Mamluk tiles from Damascus in the British Museum, and last year’s Liberty exhibition at the Fashion and Textile Museum. What is your favourite museum or art gallery? Let us know!

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