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Dress

  • Place of origin:

    England (possibly, made)
    Italy (possibly, made)

  • Date:

    1845-1850 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Jacquard-woven silk, trimmed with silk passementerie and appliques

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Mrs A. Zamorra

  • Museum number:

    T.386&A-1977

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

A variety of passementerie decoration including wrapped buttons, tassels, cord, interlaced designs, fringe and flowers adorn this woman’s sleeve. Passementerie is a French term and the collective name given to a wide range of trimmings applied to curtains, cushions and upholstered furniture as well as fashionable dress. Many nineteenth century designs were based on earlier models and makers of these trimmings were highly skilled. French manufacturers led the field in innovative technique and imaginative trimmings while the British followed their styles and adapted them for their own market.

The passementerie trimmings on this sleeve have been cleverly selected to match the colours and the fabric. Pink and green tassels composed of turned wooden balls covered in floss silk and jasmins (loops) harmonise with the jacquard-woven floral pattern. Three-dimensional flower heads of silk wound over card and edged with coiled wire, punctuate the design and are reminiscent of ornaments on upholstery fringes. A twisted cord snakes up the centre of the sleeve focussing attention and bringing all the disparate elements of the design together.

Historical references are also visible. The interlaced designs in the centre of this sleeve resemble Celtic knotwork patterns that appear on carved stone crosses, metalwork, textiles and illuminated manuscripts in Britain and Ireland. They are formed from three strands of gimp (silk threads wound around a wire or, in this case, cotton core) which are passed alternately over and under one another by hand using a shuttle. The buttons are reminiscent of those on men’s eighteenth century coats with their glossy threads wound around a domed wooden base to create a pattern. The red, cream and green check could have been inspired by a tartan or coloured checks on fashionable dress silks.

Physical description

Woman's dress and cape made of jacquard-woven rose pink silk with broad white stripe, figured with pink and green floral sprays, trimmed with passementerie and woven silk buttons

Place of Origin

England (possibly, made)
Italy (possibly, made)

Date

1845-1850 (made)

Artist/maker

Unknown

Materials and Techniques

Jacquard-woven silk, trimmed with silk passementerie and appliques

Descriptive line

Dress and cape of satin, possibly England or Italy, 1845-1850

Materials

Silk; Passementerie

Categories

Fashion; Women's clothes; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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