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Dress fabric

Dress fabric

  • Date:

    1725-1730 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Brocaded silk

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Judy Wentworth

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This fabric, a brocaded silk, was part of the petticoat from a lady's gown. Its design is typical of fashionable silks worn in the1720s. The type of pattern repeat used was known as a point repeat, in which the pattern appeared in mirror image to either side of a central axis. This gave quite a formal effect to the pattern, but the overall effect could be lightened with delicate drawing of the individual motifs. In this case a trailling pattern resembling lace has been included. A lady at Court in the period, Mrs Delaney, described a dress she wore in 1729 as having "a running pattern like lace in the ground".

Physical description

The silk has a green ground with main pattern created by supplementary weft of white silk, bound in twill, and 7 further colours brocaded.
Pattern is dominated by stylised urn with flowers, in point repeat, enclosed with lace-like trails.
The silk is a loom width, and slightly more than two repeats in length. It appears to have been part of a petticoat, with the lower edge damaged as if trodden down at hem level, and the sides turned under at the selvedges, with remaining traces of stitching threads.


1725-1730 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Brocaded silk


Length: 118 cm, Width: 43.5 cm including selveges

Object history note

Registered File number 1996/275.

Descriptive line

Green and white silk dress fabric brocaded in colours, 1720s






Textiles; Clothing


Textiles and Fashion Collection

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