Glove Story of the Week - The Glasgow Gloves | The Fashion Museum

Glove Story of the Week - The Glasgow Gloves

Welcome to Week 14 of our series showcasing the world-class Glove Collection of the Worshipful Company of the Glovers of London, cared for and housed here in Bath at the Fashion Museum.

10 May 2019

The Worshipful Company of Glovers of London will this weekend come together for the annual Master’s Weekend. This year the special weekend will be based in Glasgow.   

Each year the Master Glover of the Worshipful Company of Glovers of London chooses a city, town or region in the UK, and arranges visits of interest so that members of the Livery can get together and catch up with each other. This week, therefore, we are focussing on a pair of gloves with a Glasgow connection, part of a group recently gifted to the Glove Collection Trust. 

The Glasgow Gloves date from the 1950s and are made from the finest quality dark brown suede leather. The gloves are hand-sewn, with three rows of stitching, called points, on the backs. The quirks, the diamond-shaped panels between the fingers, are the mark of high quality gloves as they give a better fit.

The length of a glove is referred to as the button length; this is the measurement from the base of the thumb to the end of the glove, in inches. Each button length is equal to one inch. The button length of the Glasgow Gloves is four, which means that they are classified as above wrist gloves.

The gloves were gifted to the Glove Collection Trust still wrapped in their original packaging, printed with the name of the store from where they were bought, Henry Burton & Co Ltd, 111 Buchanan Street, Glasgow. The inside of the right hand glove is also stamped ‘Burton’s’.

Founded in 1847 Henry Burton & Co was a leading gentleman’s outfitter in Glasgow.  The Index of Firms of 1888 noted: “It would be difficult to indicate a name more widely known or more eminently reputed in connection with all that appertains to the trade in high class gentlemen’s outfitting than that of the notable house of Messrs. Henry Burton & Co. whose two extensive and attractive establishments…are such prominent features in retail commercial circles in Glasgow”.

Burton’s was particularly noted for the ‘celebrated’ buckskin gloves, which they supplied to the Prince of Wales (the future King Edward VII) and members of the nobility.

By the later 1940s they also noted on their shop frontage that they were a ‘Shirt Maker’. While essentially a gentleman’s outfitters, by the 1950s (the date of these gloves) the store was also selling womenswear. Henry Burton & Co closed down in 1997.

The brown leather gloves are part of a group of fashion gloves that belonged to Marjorie Murdoch (b.1908) (pictured below). Marjorie was from old Glasgow family the Barclays, who were involved in founding The Royal Hospital for Sick Children. The Hospital originally opened in 1882 and then moved to a purpose-built building in 1914, in the Yorkhill district of Glasgow in the West End of the city.

Marjorie’s gloves also included those by other Glasgow retailers, including Forsyth of Glasgow and Copeland & Lye of Glasgow.

We wish everyone a most pleasant Master’s Weekend in Glasgow!

Glove Stories is on display at the Fashion Museum Bath until 1 March 2020. To celebrate the display we are highlighting one fabulous pair of gloves from this wonderful collection every week.

Glove images: Courtesy of the Worshipful Company of Glovers of London

Glove photography: Peter Stone.