Condition Report Form for Banners/Flags

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    • #132146
      Sharon F. Corey

      I have been Googling for a sample/template condition report form for historic banners and flags and cannot find one that works. At our small museum we have a flag that was made by UDC members. It is in bad condition and needs conservation, but I need a good condition report form before we can proceed with recommendations.

    • #132153

      Hi Sharon,

      There isn’t really such a form – it would be a general object condition report. The main things you’ll want to note are the size, material, construction (for a banner, I would think about how many layers, such as front and back, if it has fringe, and how it hangs). Then for condition you’d want to note damage such as tears and loss, soiling and stains, creases, ripples, distortion and discoloration.

      Let me know if you need more help,


    • #132152
      Virginia Whelan

      Hi Sharon,

      Hiring a textile conservator who is familiar with flags and banners might be the next best step. A conservator would be able to identify issues/suggest potential solutions and then prepare a report that will include a treatment strategy and cost estimate based on your need and intentions for the flag (display? storage?). The one-time fee associated with the preparation of a Condition Report and Treatment Proposal is both a cost- and time-efficient solution. AIC’s website has a ‘Find A Conservator’ link which will help you locate a textile conservator with a specialty in flags/banners in your area.



    • #132151
      Sharon F. Corey

      Thank you Sarah for your reply!

      It is so good to hear from you! I am not sure why I hadn’t thought to check my MuseumWise – Care and Handling of Costumes and Textiles course material. I was just asked last week for help with this particular item. I have panicked (sort of) because it is so historic and it is in pretty bad condition. It is more of a banner than a flag. I haven’t had a chance to examine it up close as it is hanging over a huge window (horrors!). Most of the damage that I can see right away is due to fading. I took some photos of it then my camera quit (I dropped it over the holidays). I have purchased a new camera and just as soon as I can read the How To Get Started Guide for it (old camera was Nikon and new is Cannon) I will send you some photos. I haven’t had a Cannon camera in a while. I am planning to compile a fairly comprehensive report on this banner and present it to the local SCV. The UDC for our county is no longer in existence.

      Thanks again Sarah! I will be back in touch soon.



    • #132150
      Sharon F. Corey

      Hello Virginia and thanks for your reply and advice. Unfortunately, there is little, if any, funds for a conservator for this project. I hope to put together a report of my findings and present it to the SCV at one of their meetings. Hopefully this will prompt them to somehow have a copy made of this banner and then store the original away until funds can be raised for a conservator. My main concern right now is getting it down from hanging in front of that enormous window. There are blinds over the window, but additional lighting is streaming in from all angles. I am going to do the best that I can with making suggestions without angering anyone.


    • #132149

      Dear Sharon

      A very kind colleague who is a textile conservator working on flags and banners (Morwena Stephens) has sent me the list of headings she uses in her condition assessment form which I have added below. You may like to look at the Facebook page of a project we are carrying out to help small, mostly volunteer-run museums across southwest England look after their flags and banners – Flying the Flag

      best wishes


      ========Condition Assessment headings

      Object name:

      Accession number:



      Principal fabric:

      Seam stitching:


      Seam construction:

      Pole, including components, decoration and hanging mechanism:

      Dimensions (mm)

      Top edge:

      Lower edge:

      Fly edge:                                                                              Right edge:

      Hoist edge:                                                                         Left edge:

      Width across centre:

      Length across centre:


      ·         Major structural damage:

      o   Loss to field

      o   Loss of fringing

      o   Splits

      o   Severe creasing and/or deformation

      ·         Minor structural damage:

      o   Small holes

      o   Small splits

      o   Creasing

      ·         Surface damage:

      o   Abrasion of surface decoration

      o   Paint loss, flaking and/or cupping

      ·         Disfigurement:

      o   Fading

      o   Discoloration

      o   Staining

      ·         Chemical deterioration:

      o   Embrittlement of fibres

      o   Corrosion of metal elements

      o   Fading or discoloration

      ·         Biological deterioration:

      o   Insect infestation of textiles, including fringing

      o   Wood boring insect

      o   Fungal infestation

      ·         Damaging old repairs:

      o   Adhesive tape

      o   Adhered fabric

      o   Stitched, causing distortion

      ·         Accretions:

      o   Generalised loose particulate

      o   Generalised ingrained

      o   Localised from draped display

    • #132148
      Sharon F. Corey

      Oh my goodness Helena! This is exactly what I was looking for! And a very kind colleague indeed! I cannot possibly thank you enough for your reply! I spent so much time Googling for this information when all I had to do was post it to this forum. I am going to check out Flying the Flag on Facebook right now. If I can ever do anything to help you just let me know.



    • #132147

      What a great summary of assessment categories. I would suggest the addition of one more: Contour (does the flag/banner lay in plane or is the contour distorted). It is a bit like ‘deformation’ or ‘distortion’. I have found that flags and banners that have been rolled tightly or folded to a small size usually (also) have contour problems.


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