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Dress fabric - Victory V

Victory V

  • Object:

    Dress fabric

  • Place of origin:

    Manchester (made)

  • Date:

    1941 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Calico Printers' Association (manufacturer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Printed cotton

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

'Victory V' was produced by the Calico Printers' Association of Manchester in 1941. Originally formed in 1899, by 1949 the Calico Printer's Association was the largest commissioning printers in the UK. This design is an example of textiles with patriotic messages that were produced during the Second World War and were issued mainly as dress fabrics. Calico Printers and other textile manufacturers produced innovative and witty designs inspired by the feelings of the public during the war. Such designs proved popular with the public as they reflected the sense of national unity. In 'Victory V', the border of three dots and a dash represents the Morse code for 'V' for victory.

Physical description

Dress fabric of printed cotton. Brown ground with word 'VICTORY' repeatedly printed in white. Blanked out areas filled with images of planes and letter 'V's, some filled with planes or falling bombs and others formed by pointing hands. A border design is printed up each selvedge created by letter 'V's and three dots and a dash representing the Morse code for 'V' for victory. The pattern is laid out across the warp so requires the fabric to be hung or used sideways.

Place of Origin

Manchester (made)


1941 (made)


Calico Printers' Association (manufacturer)

Materials and Techniques

Printed cotton


Length: 120 cm, Width: 69 cm

Descriptive line

Dress fabric 'Victory V' of printed cotton, made by Calico Printers' Association, Manchester, 1941

Production Note

Reason For Production: Retail
Unusually the design is printed across the warp, meaning that the fabric would not be suitable for conventional European dress making.





Subjects depicted

Victory; Hands; Aeroplane; Code; Bombs


Textiles; Propaganda; Clothing; Military; Europeana Fashion Project

Production Type

Mass produced


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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