The Museum of Design in Plastics (MoDiP) at the Arts University Bournemouth manages the Plastics Subject Specialist Network (SSN), which has 114 members representing 75 organisations, mainly other museums. Since the 1970s, plastics have become the most used material group in manufacturing and are thus an increasingly important material for our heritage. Working with Plastics SSN members, MoDiP has developed online and physical resources to help curators of collections with little knowledge of plastics identify and look after objects in collections. It has developed an online resource ‘Identifying Plastics Toolkit’ to foster best practice in the care, and thus preservation, of plastics objects in museums.
The identifying plastics toolkit consists of two parts:
o An online identification route map, which you can use with objects from your own collection. It will help you find your way through the myriad of decisions to be made when identifying the specific plastics material from which an object may be made.
o A travelling toolkit which is a physical resource that you can borrow free of charge. It aims to familiarise you with the characteristics of the plastics most frequently encountered within museum collections and provide a methodology to help in their identification.