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A STUDY OF TEXTILE TRADE – 1650s TO 1690s

The East India Company (EIC) was founded already in year 1600 and the Dutch East India Company (VOC) two years later, so long distance trade – together with national and local commerce – of desired printed cottons and silks etc was well established in western Europe in the mid-17th century. This study will give a glimpse of these cloth merchants, drapers, mercers, tailors, sellers of secondhand clothes...

January 1, 2017
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A STUDY OF TWO HAND-COLOURED FASHION DRAWINGS FROM 1792

The repeated regulations in 18th century Sweden to do with “sumptuousness and excess” were deciding factors in how people of different social strata were able to dress, making the choice of textile material not only dependent on each individual’s financial status. A complex set of rules were dictated, when it concerned textiles it first and foremost included various restrictions on silks, laces, voluminous types of clothes, trains on dresses etc luxury items...

November 2, 2016
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TRANSFERRING EMBROIDERY DESIGNS IN THE 18TH CENTURY

The tradition of transferring designs for free embroideries was well known in the 18th century. Professional workshops as well as domestic embroiderers had the possibility to draw the pattern freehand with chalk, charcoal or ink on the fabric, but more commonly designs were transferred onto linens, fine muslins, woollens etc with various methods from printed or hand drawn paper patterns. Inspirations for such motifs...

August 18, 2016
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18TH CENTURY SILK DYERS IN LONDON

A selection of 68 trade cards and bill-heads from 1703 to 1818 demonstrate some fascinating facts of the dyers and cleaners of London. To regard oneself as silk dyer dominated, whilst secondary titles were scarlet dyer, scourer or cleaner of various garments, dyer of cotton/calico or woollen fabrics. These randomly preserved trade cards and receipts also give some idea of preferred colours by the customers...

July 11, 2016
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FASHION & REMODELLING OF CLOTHING – A REVERSE CHRONOLOGY FROM 1914 TO 1810

The aim of this post is to give a brief text summary and a few images of female fashions, together with some thoughts about women’s possibilities or wishes to stay fashionable and to keep/alter or remodel clothing through their lives. Fashion in chronological order is seen as the most natural way to study fashion history...

June 5, 2016
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A STUDY OF UPHOLSTERY IN 18TH & 19TH CENTURY LONDON

The rich information on trade cards and bill-heads in the form of illustrations, printed texts as well as hand-written notes may be compared with observations by the social reformer Charles Booth for historical studies of London. Together these sources give a multitude of facts linked to upholstering as an occupation...

April 17, 2016
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PARCELS & BOXES – “TEXTILE SHOPPING” IN THE LONG 19TH CENTURY

To find evidence for how shoppers of delicate fabrics and other textile wares carried their purchased goods home or had it delivered to their door can be established and partly speculated from various sources. A few examples will be taken from my research of advertising in the weekly Whitby Gazette from 1855 to 1914, a reconstructed draper’s shop and census returns listing errand boys and others within the textile trade...

February 4, 2016
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SHOP WINDOWS – THE DRAPERY TRADE IN THE LONG 19TH CENTURY

Display windows became popular in the last decades of 18th century in London giving rise to clear improvements for showing off such goods such as drapery in the most desirable way – a novelty which was also introduced in many other English cities and towns around the year 1800. This innovation was primarily due to the technical advancement of producing larger glass windows, but secondarily this also had an important role in the growth of a consumer society...

January 3, 2016
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HABERDASHERS – 18th & 19th CENTURY TRADE-CARDS

One of my earlier posts includes some brief research of fashion and cloth trade-cards from The British Museum Collection online, dating back to the early 18th century. Once again the aim will be to study historical events from this fascinating and very extensive collection, now based on a search for “haberdashers trade cards”...

November 18, 2015
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THE HISTORY OF A LINEN TABLECLOTH – DATED 1789

To own a substantial number of unbleached or white linen tablecloths in a Swedish nobility home, was a tradition with its roots in Medieval times. This group of interior textiles also represented an important part of the family linen storage and as a valuable heirloom – a practice continuing for several hundreds of years...

June 11, 2015
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A SELECTION OF EARLY FASHION & CLOTH TRADE-CARDS

The British Museum Collection online includes a unique selection of trade-cards donated 1818 by Dorothea Banks, dating back to the early 18th century. Parts of this material is of key interest from a textile history point ...

May 29, 2014
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NATURAL DYEING – JOHN GERARD’S HERBAL of 1597 (1633)

During my research of textile dyeing for the ongoing project “TEXTILIA LINNAEANA”, I came across a most interesting volume. It was a rare Herbal including numerous plants possible to use for natural dyeing and on a few occasions the accompaning texts...

January 3, 2014
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FORGOTTEN VICTORIAN TEXTILE OBSERVATIONS

Follow the young Swedish traveller, J P Bager, as he walks through the streets of København and Hamburg en route for London. He also visited Birmingham, Manchester, Liverpool, Leeds and Hull during his journey in the late summer of 1840...

November 7, 2013
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ALUM AND TEXTILE DYEING

Alum was of universal importance for textile dyeing before the introduction of chemical dyes in the 1850s. Thanks to my two textile history projects which are currently in progress, I have had the possibility to study the significance of the alum quarrying and trade...

September 12, 2013