John Styles, University of Hertfordshire, Project Leader

John Styles

 John Styles is Professor Emeritus in History at the University of Hertfordshire. He led the European Research Council project ‘Spinning in the Era of the Spinning Wheel’ from 2010 to 2015. He joined the University as Research Professor in History in 2004, after thirteen years as Head of Graduate Studies at the Victoria and Albert Museum, where he remains Honorary Senior Research Fellow. He retired from Hertfordshire in 2019, but retains an honorary appointment there as Professor Emeritus in History. In 2019-20 he held the Eleanor Searle Visiting Professorship in History at the California Institute of Technology / Huntington Library. He specializes in the history of early-modern Britain and its colonies, especially material life, textiles, manufacturing, and design. His most recent books are The Dress of the People: Everyday Fashion in Eighteenth-Century England (2007) and Threads of Feeling: The London Foundling Hospital’s Textile Tokens, 1740-1770 (2010). He curated the exhibition ‘Threads of Feeling’, displayed at the London Foundling Museum in 2010-11, the de Witt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum at Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, USA in 2013-14. He is currently writing a series of articles and a book on fashion, textiles and the origins of Industrial Revolution.

David Celetti, University of Padua.

David Celetti

David Celetti was Post-Doctoral Research Fellow attached to ‘Spinning in the Era of the Spinning Wheel’ from 2011 to 2012. He holds a doctorate in Economic and Social History from the University of Verona. His dissertation was entitled ‘Hemp in the Venetian Economy of the 16th and 17th centuries’. He specializes in the early-modern European economy, especially proto-industry, agriculture and trade. He has also undertaken oral histories of rural communities in Italy. As Post-Doctoral Research Fellow attached to ‘Spinning in the Era of the Spinning Wheel’, he researched spinning in continental Europe, especially France, Italy, Germany and the Netherlands.

Alice Dolan, PhD Researcher

Alice Dolan

Alice Dolan was PhD Researcher attached to ‘Spinning in the Era of the Spinning Wheel’ from 2011 to 2014. She studied for her BA in History at Royal Holloway, University of London, followed by the MA in the History of Design at the Royal College of Art / Victoria and Albert Museum. She also worked as a research assistant/intern at the Victoria and Albert and Ashmolean Museums, and as research assistant on the ‘Pockets of History’ project. The thesis she researched and wrote as PhD Researcher is entitled ‘The Fabric of Life: Linen and Life Cycle in English Daily Life, 1678-1810’ (PhD Thesis, University of Hertfordshire, 2015). She blogs about her research at