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PROFESSIONAL WEAVERS AND CHILD LABOUR IN MALMÖ – 1650 TO 1700

Linen weavers, stripy woollen fabrics, eiderdown filled bolsters, silver accessories for clothing, weaving of broadcloth and child labour within textile manufacturing. These are the main subjects that will be observed via historical documents and preserved items from the Malmö area in southernmost Sweden...

July 11, 2017
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TEXTILE FURNISHING & EMBROIDERIES – A STUDY FROM 1650 TO 1700

For several centuries Malmö and its nearby districts had benefited from a prosperous and long-lasting trade – including imports and exports of various textile goods. Circumstances that changed rapidly at the Treaty of Roskilde in 1658, when this wealthy Danish town and other closely situated areas became part of Sweden. The main trade routes were now altered, new taxes were introduced...

March 23, 2017
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TEXTILE PRODUCTION & TRADITIONS IN A COASTAL TOWN – 1525-1650

Quite a large number of textiles from the period 1525-1650 are kept in the Malmö Museum collection – mostly purchased from Italy, Spain and other countries in the 20th century – but it is only a limited number that with certainty can be traced to local citizens and their everyday life from this part of the early modern period...

March 3, 2017
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EMBROIDERIES, SILKS & VELVETS – AFTER THE REFORMATION

The Catholicism formally ended 1536 in Denmark, but St Petri church in Malmö already in the previous decade entered a period of uncertainties and financial difficulties, as a consequence the church had to sell off gold and silver included in the Medieval embroidered vestments etc. Furthermore, new acquisitions of ecclesiastical textiles...

November 23, 2016
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THE EMBROIDERERS – MEDIEVAL TEXTILES

A final post of the late Medieval textiles in St Petri church will give a brief history of the professional embroiderers’ skills, used designs and how this trade in some areas developed into surprisingly large scale production centres on the Continent, England and in the Nordic area. These complex and artistic embroideries...

September 6, 2016
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MEDIEVAL TEXTILES – BIBLICAL MOTIFS & SYMBOLISM

Expensive silks and velvets used in ecclesiastical textiles were primarily valued for their embellishing qualities, whilst the role of the embroideries had double meanings. The decorative function was of great significance with the finest of stitching in silk and metallic threads, but the symbolism of the patterns is believed to have been just as important. These figure embroideries...

June 20, 2016
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ITALIAN SILKS & VELVETS – MEDIEVAL TEXTILES

Lucca, Genova, Firenze, Venezia and Milano – cities where silk weaving developed to a work of art during the Medieval period and Renaissance. These desirable textiles were sold via a myriad of trading routes through Europe and beyond. St Petri church in Malmö was one such customer, who aspired to extend its storage of vestments especially during the 15th century and up to the Reformation...

May 1, 2016
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APPLIQUÉ & SILK BROCADES – MEDIEVAL TEXTILES

The complex appliqué technique was a usual addition for the professional embroiderers in European workshops, when decorating/illustrating the silk vestments with biblical motifs etc. This third post about the Medieval textile collection in St Petri church – aims to present a few very detailed images of these exquisite fabrics together with a brief discussion on silk brocades and how these qualities could be added with fringes, ribbons and other attributes...

March 16, 2016
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VESTMENTS & EMBROIDERIES – MEDIEVAL TEXTILES

In this second post of the Medieval textiles in St Petri, once part of the church’s liturgical traditions, I will discuss some comparisons with other contemporary collections and give a brief introduction to the practice and the use of the silk, velvet and linen vestments. A selection of images depicting the preserved fragments with intricate silk and gold embroideries...

January 17, 2016
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MEDIEVAL TEXTILES IN ST PETRI CHURCH – AN INTRODUCTION

This seventh article of the Malmö area’s textile history will be the first – of several studies – describing the unique collection of vestments preserved and once used in the St Petri church. The collection includes 24 items; fragments of chasubles, copes, linen shirts, an altar piece, one dalmatic, fringes...

December 2, 2015
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THE TEXTILE PRODUCTION – A MEDIEVAL TOWN

A rich selection of excavated textile tools from Malmö gives a good comprehension of textile production in the Medieval period. This in the context of local spinning, weaving or plaiting studied from spindle whorls of various materials, loom-weights and more implements...

November 3, 2015
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FRAGMENTS OF LINEN AND SILK – A MEDIEVAL TOWN

In the previous post the rich selection of finds related to wool and woollen cloth were analysed, linen and silk are not as frequent, but even so fascinating evidence of the inhabitants’ daily lives are presented. In this context I will discuss the trade with linen, the town’s linen weavers, imported silks, an unearthed cod piece and a ribbon of silk...

October 18, 2015
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A MEDIEVAL TOWN – DOMESTIC & IMPORTED WOOLLEN CLOTH

This fourth article of the Malmö area’s textile trades and material culture is the first of several posts which will describe the new circumstances for the coastal Medieval town. Various trades had by now been of importance for a long time, but the growing population gave it new dimensions. For textiles and clothing...

October 4, 2015
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THE LATER NORDIC IRON & VIKING AGE – TEXTILE TRADITIONS

This third article of textile trade and material culture of the Malmö area, will discuss the development through the later part of the Iron Age and the more complex novelties in luxury materials added to accessories and garments during the Viking Age...

September 17, 2015
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THE NORDIC IRON AGE – CLOTHING AND DYES

The approximate first thousand years of the Nordic Iron Age (500BC-600AD) was a period when textile related finds first decreased then increased in the Malmö area... introduction of dyeing from the knowledge learned via local excavations and comparisons with some extremely well-preserved Danish bog finds.

August 27, 2015
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NORDIC BRONZE AGE TRADITIONS – A TEXTILE STUDY

...This first part introducing the Stone Age period and continuing into the Nordic Bronze Age (1800 to 500BC) – a time when skin garments went through refinement simultaneously with the early development of woven woollen fabrics and plaiting techniques...

August 7, 2015