From Plant to Textile

Fibres extracted from the stems of stinging nettles have been widely used to make textiles. Concentrating on the nettle species ‘Urtica dioica’, which occurs as a perennial plant in Europe and in the temperate zones of Asia and America, the Supervisor of the Textile and Fibres Conservation Studio at The British Museum discusses the processing and use of this textile fibre from prehistoric times to the present.