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Pocket

  • Place of origin:

    England (made)

  • Date:

    1718-1720 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Haines, Hannah (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Linen, hand sewn with linen thread, embroidered with silk thread, and linen tape

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the descendants of Hannah Downes

  • Museum number:

    T.42-1935

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

In the 18th century, women’s pockets were not sewn into their gowns. Instead they were attached to a tape and tied around the waist as separate garments. Worn under the hoops and petticoats, they were accessed through openings in the gown and petticoat seams.
This is an example of a single pocket made of linen, embroidered with silk and bearing its original linen tie. Its small size and the short length of the opening and the tie suggest that it was made for a young girl. Yellow silk thread on white linen was a popular combination in British embroideries of the early 18th century, influenced by imported Indian embroideries. The use of backstitch can also be attributed to Indian needlework, although the pattern of the flowers reflects embroidery designs found on British accessories, such as aprons and gloves.
This pocket forms part of the Hannah Downes collection of needlework, executed by four generations of women between the late 17th and 19th centuries in Britain. The family tree identifies Hannah Haines, youngest daughter of Hannah Downes, as the maker of this pocket between 1718–1720.

Physical description

A single pocket made of linen, embroidered in floral motifs with yellow silk, with a linen tape tie

Place of Origin

England (made)

Date

1718-1720 (made)

Artist/maker

Haines, Hannah (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Linen, hand sewn with linen thread, embroidered with silk thread, and linen tape

Dimensions

Length: 27 cm maximum, Width: 18.2 cm maximum

Object history note

Given by the descendants of Hannah Downes and part of a collection of needlework executed by four generations of women. The family tree identifies Hannah Haines, youngest daughter of Hannah Downes, as the maker of this pocket between 1718-1720.

Historical significance: An example of an early 18th century women's pocket, a separate garment worn tied around the waist under the petticoats. The small size of this pocket and the short length of its opening suggest that it was made for a young girl.

Materials

Linen; Linen tape; Linen thread; Silk thread

Techniques

Hand sewing; Hand embroidery

Categories

Accessories; Embroidery; Textiles; Clothing; Europeana Fashion Project

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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