Browsing articles in "Miscellany"

Jean Monro –

May 22, 2008 | Leave a Comment

The company Jean Monro is a textile manufacturer with a focus on traditional English prints — lots and lots of flowers. They’re represented in the US through Clarence House (who in turn has individual representation in fabric showrooms throughout the country). The above “Geisha” pattern (I love that acid mint color) makes me wonder about the relationship between “the West” today and China — and how this relationship relates (or doesn’t) to periods of chinoiserie obsession in Europe, beginning in the 17th century. While art and decoration under this category expresses a European idealization of China, and the cultural fascination can be seen as a compliment of sorts, it’s not really about “becoming” Chinese in any true sense. Today I don’t think there are many examples of a broad Western interest in a Chinese aesthetic — but now China is seen as obsessed with Westernization. My thought process is clunky here but I guess what I’m getting at is a question: how does today’s artistic relationship between Europe and China relate (or diverge) from that of previous eras, what has been lost, replaced, or transformed in both region’s artistic view of the other?

Rugrabbit –

Apr 19, 2008 | 1 Comment

Here’s quite a find: The site is a clearinghouse for individual carpet and textile dealers and enthusiasts to post items available for sale. The textile above is described as, “silk-velvet Ikat, Bukhara c1870 mounted. 81x33cm”. The seller is Tina Tabone,

The Textile Society Antique Textile Fair –

Mar 8, 2008 | Leave a Comment


Oh, I so wish I could magically transport myself to Manchester England this weekend! The Textile Society (the British one) is having their Antique Textile Fair this Sunday, March 9th. Here’s their description of what to expect: “Stand after stand heaped high with fabulous textiles and garments from all over the world. Racks of vintage and ethnic clothing, silks from the mysterious East, bundles of braids, loops of ribbons, boxes of buttons, silks and satins, embroideries and knitting, along with old household linens from France.” Absolute heaven! But instead I’ll just enjoy the image above of a “1920s African shield inspired furnishing fabric”. This from Meg Andrews, one of the textile dealers represented at the show. (I found the image on Hali Magazine’s website, where they discuss the 3/9 fair.)

Sofia at Contemporary Cloth –

Feb 26, 2008 | Leave a Comment



Here’s a great pattern named “Sofia” from the website contemporary cloth. Only $16.50 a yard! And three colorways to choose from — the two here plus a sweet pink and green. The black and white could be very urban / chic while the orange and yellow begs to be joined up with some ’70s avocado green.

Zandra Rhodes –

Jan 25, 2008 | Leave a Comment


As an interiors person I don’t pay much attention to fabrics in the context of women’s fashion but this photo of clothing designer Zandra Rhodes is pretty irresistible! Such unabashed enjoyment of lavish color and pattern! Click here for the 8/16/07 New York Times article from which it came.

Thanksgiving Linen –

Nov 22, 2007 | 1 Comment

I spent the afternoon doing prep-work for tomorrow’s big day of cooking and got to thinking about my small interest in vintage Irish linen dish towels. My curiosity was first piqued this summer when I last visited my grandparent’s house and noticed anew the thematic dish towels they keep in a secondary bathroom. As a category they seem to range between kitschy, plain-old tacky, and generally bizarre. But the precedent for cramming all kinds of trivial – and historic – information on this one type of domestic cloth is interesting (see Exhibit A at top, the “horse map of the world” tea towel now on EBay). Perhaps it’s some kind of outgrowth of “samplers” from earlier eras, or it just became a convenient, and relatively inexpensive, medium for souvenir-making? (I’ve seen several commemorating Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s wedding for instance). But anyway – here are two fun Beatles ones I found. Click here for the site. — And may none of your linens be destroyed by wine, fire or other tomorrow!

Red Robes –

Nov 10, 2007 | Leave a Comment

While the stories coming out of Burma / Myanmar for a short time six weeks ago were harrowing, the photos also caught my attention from a purely visual standpoint: color + fabric combined to communicate culture, religion and a cry for justice. Our own American culture is so fragmented, and clothing is so often used as an expression of fashion only – rather than belief – that photos like this speak to a collective unity of purpose that is largely unfamiliar to me. Irregardless, the images have inspired me to continue a look out for “textiles in the news” for future posts.

Off to Venice –

Oct 18, 2007 | Leave a Comment


I’ve been so busy getting ready for a week-long trip to Venice that I’ve completely fallen behind on posting. There’s still no time now, as the cab will be here in under twenty minutes. I hope to return with lots of artistic and aesthetic inspiration! Here’s an image from a beautiful book, “Venice and the Islamic World 828-1797.”


Sep 30, 2007 | 1 Comment

Well, months after first thinking I should start a blog dedicated to all things fiber-ous, I’m finally getting started! On this site I hope to explore and document textiles that inspire me — the whole range from traditional fabrics and motifs to contemporary bedding, carpets and accessories. I’d like the site to be a virtual portfolio of visual references, associations and ideas, all tied loosely together under the broad category of “fiber”. Why? Because more than any other artistic medium I’m viscerally attracted to textiles. They wrap up so many things: craft, texture, tradition, artistry, innovation, warmth, etc….