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Furnishing fabric

Furnishing fabric

  • Place of origin:

    Preston (printed)
    London (sold)

  • Date:

    1850-1860 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Bannister Hall (printers)
    C. Hindley & Sons (retailer)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Block-printed and glazed cotton

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    British Galleries, Room 125, Edwin and Susan Davies Gallery, case 1

This printed cotton furnishing or chintz (a cotton with a glazed finish) was used for summer curtains and loose covers on furniture. It would have been relatively expensive to buy. Hindley & Sons' clientele could be broadly defined as well-to-do. In an article in Studies in the Decorative Arts (1998) Laura Microulis describes an analysis of 737 orders which showed that approximately 70 per cent had come from the gentry or the middle class.

Part of the stock of Hindley's, this cotton was printed for them by outside contract printers. The leading firm at this time was Thomas Clarkson of Bannister Hall, Lancashire, which was probably responsible for printing this example. Hindley's (also known as Charles Hindley, C. Hindley & Sons, and Hindley & Wilkinson) was founded by Charles Hindley in Berners Street, London, in 1817. The firm became one of the leading full-service house furnishers, and in 1844 expanded with the purchase of the Miles and Edwards (founded in 1822), which specialised in the sale of textile furnishings. It then moved to 134 Oxford Street, where the principle department was the 'Chintz Room', which displayed specimens of chairs and sofas covered with printed furnishings for clients to examine before placing their orders.

Physical description

Furnishing fabric

Place of Origin

Preston (printed)
London (sold)


1850-1860 (made)


Bannister Hall (printers)
C. Hindley & Sons (retailer)

Materials and Techniques

Block-printed and glazed cotton


Length: 54 cm unframed, Width: 65 cm unframed

Object history note

Sold by C. Hindley & Sons, London
Printed in Lancashire, probably by the firm of Thomas Clarkson, Bannister Hall, Preston
Part 18 (T.219:18-1925)

Descriptive line

Textile sample

Labels and date

British Galleries:
Chintz (printed cotton with a glazed finish) was the most popular form of lightweight furnishing in the1850s. It was used for curtains, especially for summer use, and for loose covers. We know that this chintz was sold by C. Hindley & Sons, one of the best-known house furnishers in London, who would have had it specially woven. Their principal showroom was called the 'Chintz Room', underlying the importance of this part of their trade. [27/03/2003]




Textiles and Fashion Collection

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