Members of the Braid Society have wide ranging textile interests and are members of many textile-related organisations and guilds, including the following:
The American Kumihimo Society (AKS) was formed in January of 2016 as a resource for the braiding community in the Americas. While our focus is on Kumihimo, a Japanese style of braiding, we will provide support and education resources to promote and nurture the public understanding of braiding from many cultures.
This is a forum for collectors, scholars and makers united by a shared passion and enjoyment of textile art, design and history. A charity which funds all aspects of textile study, organises the Antique Textile Fair and produces a yearly journal.
The Textile Society of America, Inc. provides an international forum for the exchange and dissemination of information about textiles worldwide, from artistic, cultural, economic, historic, political, social, and technical perspectives.
Japan Society North West provides a forum for everyone interested in any aspect of Japanese life and culture. The website provides links to groups with similar aims in other regions. The Braid Society has participated in Japan Day (www.jnsw.org.uk/JapanDay), a showcase for everything relating to Japanese Culture, both traditional and modern.
The International Guild of Knot Tyers (IGKT) is an association of people with interests in knots and knotting techniques of all kinds. We have over a thousand members world-wide, from all walks of life, including academics, surgeons, sailors, sportsmen and women, scouters, magicians, farmers, miners and accountants. Membership is open to anyone interested in knotting (whether expert or simply hoping to learn from others).
The objectives of the Association are the preservation and improvement of the craftsmanship in hand weaving, spinning and dyeing for the benefit of the public and the promotion of public education in such craftsmanship.
An Italian group organising kumihimo courses and exhibitions. The web site contains details of their activities, information about the range of kumihimo techniques and equipment - and of course - plenty of pictures of braids!
This site is in Japanese (search for kumihimo-society on google and accept the offer of a translation to get a reasonable understanding of the content). Society newsletters are available to download (again in Japanese). These contain a number of interesting articles, with plenty of colour pictures.
The Archaeological Textiles Review is an annual publication to disseminate knowledge of textile research through articles, reviews, and short summaries. It is produced by the Society "Friends of Archaeological Textiles Newsletter" (ATN) which anyone interested in archaeological textile research can join.
The Heritage Crafts Association is the advocacy body for traditional heritage crafts. Its aim is to support and promote heritage crafts as a fundamental part of our living heritage.. Working in partnership with Government and key agencies, it provides a focus for craftspeople, groups, societies and guilds, as well as individuals who care about the loss of traditional crafts skills, and works towards a healthy and sustainable framework for the future.
The aims of the BA are to: promote the knowledge of basketry, chairseating and allied crafts; (their making, study, collecting, teaching and use); set standards of teaching and quality of workmanship; and encourage original design. The BA promotes classes, courses, exhibitions, lectures
and discussions, and awards bursaries for further study, both at formal courses and for periods of travel.
The principal objectives of the EG are to: promote and encourage the art of embroidery and related crafts; encourage the creation of fine articles incorporating the use of, or associated with, embroidery; educate the public in the history and art of embroidery; undertake or support research in embroidery; and collect, document, preserve, exhibit and interpret examples of fine embroidery, which are of historical or educational merit, and to make such articles available to the public.
The Lace Guild is the largest organization for lacemakers in the British Isles, and membership is international. The aims are to: provide information about the craft of lacemaking, its history and use; promote a high standard of lacemaking; and encourage the design, development and professional presentation of lace. This is achieved through a magazine, ‘Lace’, publishing books, running courses, having an assessment scheme, and holding a triennial major competition and exhibition. comprehensive lace library world, and a significant collection of lace and lace-related items.
Complex Weavers is dedicated to expanding the boundaries of handweaving, to encourage weavers to develop their own creative styles, to inspire through research, documentation, and the sharing of innovative ideas. Complex Weavers challenges members’ skills and imagination by sharing information and innovations with fellow weavers – both directly and through study groups, Seminars, Journal and biennial exhibition, Complexity. There are some 20 study groups including one dedicated to Kumihimo focused on the study of braids and braid making.
The Guild is dedicated to UK domestic hand knitting, machine knitting and crochet. Based in the UK it has national and international branches. The formal objective is “to advance public knowledge and appreciation of the crafts of knitting and crochet particularly but not exclusively through the furtherance of skill and creativity in the said crafts and the preservation of the heritage of knitting and crochet”.
The aim of the Society is to encourage and share knowledge and enjoyment of every type of bead, to improve the accuracy of information and the skills of making, using, caring for and collecting beads, together with the understanding of the many peoples for whom beads are so important in their lives.
There are many re-enactment groups covering many time periods so it is impossible to give a single definitive link. However, the attention to authentic textiles often involves braids or narrow woven bands.
"The Vikings" (http://www.vikingsonline.org.uk) is an example of a national society in the UK with over 1000 members and local groups (e.g. Ydalir - http://www.ydalir.co.uk - based in Manchester). Their living history and craft activities include Tablet Weaving, Trollen and heddle weaving.
The work of 15th Century Silkwomen is covered by a specialist braiding group, Soper Lane (http://www.et-tu.com/soper/index.html).
One of the umbrella groups is Histrenact (http://www.histrenact.co.uk) which provides another starting point for links to other organisations.