Artist Textiles.

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The early 20th century saw the rise of artists having their designs  printed on fabric to be used in the house or as pieces of clothing. This meant that their art was accessible to the masses rather than being owned by galleries or the very rich. After the war a movement called ‘a masterpiece in every home’ became popular and saw many great artists such as Salvador Dali, Joan Miro and John Piper having their designs printed and used widely.

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Rare vintage 1920’s cotton fabric by french textile artist Raoul Dufy who was one of the first to have his designs printed on cotton fabric. This piece was originally used as a pair of curtains.

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This wonderful Picasso print cotton fabric made into 1950’s style dress. By the 1960’s  Picasso was allowing many of his art work to be printed on to dress fabric, he apparently wouldn’t allow his work to be used for sofas or chairs “Picasso may be leaned against, not sat on” the curator of the 2014 exhibition of textile art  was quoted as saying.

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The piece above printed on soft rayon material, originally curtains is now being made into a skirt.

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Northern Cathedral – a 1960’s work  by John Piper screen printed on  cotton fabric.

 

 

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20th Century Rayon Dress Making Fabric

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Considered the oldest manufactured fabric, rayon is made from cellulose ( often wood pulp), and thought of as semi-synthetic. There are several different ways of processing the cellulose each producing slightly different fabrics such as viscose, modal, lyocell and tencel.

Known as artificial silk when it was first introduced in the late 1800’s early 19o0’s, it soon became very popular as a cheaper alternative to cotton and silk.  By the 1950’s the versatility of rayon meant it was being used extensively often printed in a great variety of fashionable designs and colours.

 

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1960’s Walric rayon shown above is a heavier dress fabric which has a stiffish linen feel.

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this lighter silk crepe like rayon is perfect to dresses and blouses

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Cold satin rayon in great 1950’s geometric design

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Rayon brocade fabric which could be used for dress making or interiors

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1960’s 70’s interiors fabric in a rayon and cotton blend

 

Check out the excellent blog  by Emileigh of Flashback Summer – The History of Rayon and how to care for it  Rayon blog

 

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Vintage Curtain Finds from 2015

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I have been looking back over the last year at the vintage curtains I have found.  Most of my treasure was from junk shops, charity shops and flea markets though some from people who got in touch via the internet. I have bought 1960’s barkcloth curtains by Heals and wonderful designers such as Collier Campbell.

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Heal’s barkcloth curtains ‘garland’ by Mo Sullivan

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‘kasbah’ by Collier Campbell

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1960’s rayon curtains in Barbara Brown like design

There have been some  other more modern curtains from excellent Swedish designers at Ikea.

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and some with unusual and interesting children’s designs

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Bart Simpson playing football

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Twinkletoes in pink for little girls.

I am looking forward to more treasure hunting in 2016 seeing what other fabric  I can find whether  in the form of curtains or smaller pieces.

Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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Bernard Wardle Fabric Design

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The company Bernard Wardle started in the 1930’s and  by the late 40’s were producing a wonderful variety of designs in cotton chintz and hand & roller printed linen for interiors from their base in Stockport, Cheshire.

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Above picture shows the bee logo on the selvedge of a piece of 1930’s /40’s linen.

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‘french garden’ an early design from the 1930’s or 40’s on cotton.

After 1950 Bernard Wardle  introduced colourfast dyes which enabled them to use vibrant colours in new popular patterns.

By the 1960’s the company Bernard Wardle had became well known for producing high quality fabric and printing for Heals and using designers such as Robert Dodd, Colleen Farr, Elizabeth Tuff, Janet Taylor and Natalie Gibson. Edward Pond was design director from 1962-65 introducing a series great designs.

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‘cathedrals’ by Edward Pond

 

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‘guinevere’ 1960’s abstract floral design.

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Edward Pond’s ‘malaga’ produced in a variety of colours .

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‘vanessa’ by Hilary Rosenthal 1966

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‘barbican’ by Robert Dodd

The Wardle Pattern Books were presented to the Whitworth Art Gallery in 1962.

Everflex was an offshoot of the main Bernard Wardle company becoming famous for making fabric for car interiors and soft tops. Rolls Royce, Bentley and Jaguar being some well known customers. The main branch of Everflex opened in 1948 in Caernarfon, Wales and closed in 1980.

Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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Collier Campbell Designs

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On my treasure hunts for vintage fabrics, among my very favourite finds are the vibrant and colourful designs by Collier Campbell who I have admired for many years.

The working design partnership of sisters Susan Collier and Sarah Campbell started in the 1960’s producing work for Liberty, Heals, Habitat and many others. They founded their company together in 1979/80. Their painterly designs like works of art will never date, many can be found in the V&A archives.

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‘Bauhaus’ for Liberty of London,

an iconic 1972 design which I gather was inspired by the Gunta Stolzl tapestry which hangs in the Bauhaus archive in Berlin

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‘Kasak’ for Liberty, reminding me of log-cabin patchwork.

970575_630617090290169_347078010_nSusan Collier and Sarah Campbell were the first women to win the Duke of Edinburgh’s Designer Prize in 1984 for their ‘Six Views’ fabric collection  ‘Cote d’Azure’ shown above in deep colourway,  being one of them.

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‘Sideshow’ designed for Heals in the 1970’s

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‘Clandon’ designed for Liberty.

After Susan Collier’s  death in 2011, Sarah Campbell now works under her own name producing wonderful designs for textiles and stationery. She has a website Sarah Campbell Designs and a great blog which is regularly updated showing what a busy enthusiastic and inspiring person she is.

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For further reading and exploration of  their work the book ‘The Collier Campbell Archive, 50 years of passion in pattern’ is available to buy from Amazon and any good bookshop.

Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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Pat Albeck – Textile designer

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Pat Albeck has always been a favourite designer of mine, her career began in the 1950’s designing dress making fabric for Horrockses. Her designs influenced by Scandinavian textiles, French and Italian fashion fabrics.

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By the 1960’s she became well known for designing dress fabric for ‘dolly rockers’ one of the English boutique labels of the 1960’s, very ‘hip’ at the time and known for using model Patti Boyd to model their dresses.

The Dolly Rocker dress below courtesy of ‘OMG that dress‘. So 1960’s..

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During the 60’s and 70’s Pat Albeck continued designing dress and interiors fabric, as well as wallpaper and tea towels, many for the newly formed National Trust.

The ones below of Styal Country Park in Cheshire and the Lake District. both in her distinctive style.

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She worked for several different companies including Sanderson, this is ‘spot and his friends’ which I am pretty sure is one of her designs, an even more familiar one is ‘Italian Garden’ for Osman.

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Daisy Chain (below) was one of the Jonelle range from John Lewis always a best-selling design, available in several colour-ways, it has recently been reissued as part of the anniversary range.

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Primavera (shown above) designed for Osman furnishings in 1960, she thought of as one of her favourite and most successful designs.

Pat Albeck has an interesting and comprehensive website telling her story in detail, well worth a look.  Interestingly her son Matthew married another designer Emma Bridgewater.

Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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Vintage Jonelle Fabric from John Lewis

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The first John Lewis store was opened in London in 1864. An up market store originally selling textiles and fabric, later selling a wide variety of items for the home.

They introduced the Jonelle fabric range in 1937, since 2000 the name was dropped in favour of John Lewis. From the late 1940’s onwards they collaborated with top designers also associated with Heals, such as Lucienne Day,  Pat Albeck, Jacqueline Groag and Margaret Simeon, then in the 60’s Tessa Hagity, Danny Harrison and Thalia Perceval.

The Jonelle range, especially those from the 1950’s and 60’s have become popular and are becoming harder to find. Below is ‘daisy chain’ by Pat Albeck which was available in several colour ranges.

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Flower Waltz another popular design from the 1960’s, was printed on linen or cotton.

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Jacaranda, a big bold painterly design from the 1960’s.

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and an older 1940’s or 50’s striped floral cotton interiors fabric.

 

 

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Further information about Vintage Fabric can be found at the links below.

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