Not currently on display at the V&A

Sample

ca. 1850 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place of origin

Dense, tightly woven woollen and mohair pile fabrics of this type, although suitable for use as upholstery on chairs, footstools and sofas, were not appropriate for curtains or any other domestic purpose where draping or fullness of cloth was required. Woollen pile upholstery textiles were very popular in the mid-19th century. This example and the two with which it is displayed depict highly fashionable floral subjects shown in popular colours. These include dispersed rose sprigs and morning glory in the shades of royal blue, drab and brown.

This was part of a group of examples exhibited in Class XIX (no. 79) of the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Robert Lees of Cheapside in London. The exhibition catalogue described Lees' products as 'printed mohair tapestry; Utrecht mohair velvet; mohair velvets; printed Chinese velvets of mohair etc.' These samples have not been displayed since the 1851 exhibition and their condition is as new. This clearly shows the brightness and clarity of colour used in furnishing the home at this time.


Object details

Categories
Object type
Materials and techniques
Block-printed mohair and cotton plush
Brief description
Furnishing fabric sample of block-printed mohair and cotton plush, Robert Lees & Co., London, ca. 1850
Physical description
Furnishing fabric sample of block-printed mohair and cotton plush. Printed with morning glories set in a wavy diamond grid formed by interlaced blue bands on a dark brown ground.
Dimensions
  • Height: 30cm
  • Width: 44.5cm
  • Height: 12in
  • Width: 18in
Dimensions checked: Measured; 19/01/1999 by sf
Gallery label
British Galleries: By 1851, new dyes offered whole new ranges of colour to consumers. There was great competition to produce the bright and clear colours favoured by the public. Tight woven woollen fabrics with a pile (known as 'plush') were hardwearing and very suitable for use as upholstery.(27/03/2003)
Credit line
Given by HM Commissioners of the Great Exhibition of 1851
Object history
Manufactured by Robert Lees & Co., Cheapside, London
Summary
Dense, tightly woven woollen and mohair pile fabrics of this type, although suitable for use as upholstery on chairs, footstools and sofas, were not appropriate for curtains or any other domestic purpose where draping or fullness of cloth was required. Woollen pile upholstery textiles were very popular in the mid-19th century. This example and the two with which it is displayed depict highly fashionable floral subjects shown in popular colours. These include dispersed rose sprigs and morning glory in the shades of royal blue, drab and brown.

This was part of a group of examples exhibited in Class XIX (no. 79) of the Great Exhibition of 1851 by Robert Lees of Cheapside in London. The exhibition catalogue described Lees' products as 'printed mohair tapestry; Utrecht mohair velvet; mohair velvets; printed Chinese velvets of mohair etc.' These samples have not been displayed since the 1851 exhibition and their condition is as new. This clearly shows the brightness and clarity of colour used in furnishing the home at this time.
Collection
Accession number
CIRC.601-1965

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Record createdMarch 27, 2003
Record URL
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