Border of a petticoat. Acquired in Crete (Turco-Greek ?), peasant's work. Eighteenth century [2048 - 1876]. Of coarse linen, embroidered with red silk in satin, twisted-chain, and Oriental stitches; a narrow band with scrolls and blossoms set between two horizontal lines, above which are a series of scalloped-shaped groups of ornament, these groups repeated in alternation on a geometrical basis formed with conventional leaves and flowers (carnation), with birds placed in every other shape. Most of the Cretan embroideries consist of borderings or banded designs for dresses, and are made up of repeating ornament. The flower and leaf forms are severely conventional, the birds and figures being more rudely drawn. These ornamental elements, which are very limited in number, are conspicuously Oriental; their arrangement in the design is frequently varied according to the taste of the worker, but she is always faithful to the accepted traditional details in the way of form, colour, and stitch.
Border of a Petticoat. Turco Greek (?). 18th Century [2048-1876].
Plate No. 34.
Border of a Petticoat. Turco-Greek (?). 18th Century [2047 - 1876].
Plate No. 35.
Border of a petticoat. Acquired in Crete (Turco-Greek ?), peasant's work. Eighteenth century [2047 - 1876]. Of canvas, embroidered with red silk in satin and chain stitches. The pattern consists of a lower band containing conventional ornament, above which are figures of men and women, with head-dresses and varied costumes, dancing in groups of five; fanciful cypress, carnation, and other branches set vertically between them.
Plate No. 36.
Prayer carpet. Persian, eighteenth century [950 - 1889]. The whole of the ground, of white linen, is quilted with yellow silk, and the design embroidered in chain stitch with coloured silks, chiefly white, yellow, green, and red. The border consists of a wide band set between two narrow ones, each with a waved, continuous stem, with blossoms in the wavings. Similar floral scrolling and leafy stem ornament fills the space beyond the pointed shape at upper end, which is edged with acanthus-leaf devices. The main ground below the niche, or pointed shape, is a blossoming plant, with evenly balanced bunches of flowers, between which are leaves formally arranged in a pointed shape.
Plate No. 36.
Carpet (Prayer). Persian, 18th Century [950-1889].
Plate No. 37.
Plate No. 37.
Border of cut linen, embroidered with coloured silks and silver threads. Italian, late sixteenth century [225 - 1890]. The cut forms are edged with a silver thread, fastened with open button-hole stitches, with coloured silks to the linen; beyond this edging are occasional loops of silver thread. The flowers, fruit, and bird forms are embroidered solidly with coloured silks in long and short stitches. The border is made up of a broad band of repeated and reversed leafy scrolls, flowers, and birds, with vertical stems between each pair of scrolls, arranged that no ground of either meshes or intervening ties are required. Attached to this broad band is a narrow border, with a sort of Vandyke edging, and repeated alternations of triple stem devices, with pendant buds and blossoms.
To execute such elaborately cut linen great care is required. One method, which is probably the simplest, is to embroider a small portion of the design at a time, completing the edge of each form before cutting away the background. If the whole of the background is cut away before the embroidery is done, the edges become frayed.
Plate No. 38.
Detail of cut linen, embroidered with coloured silks and silver-gilt and silver threads. Italian, late sixteenth century [100 - 1891]. Near the edge of the cut forms is a double silver-gilt thread; then follows an edging of green silk in button-hole stitch. The stitch, while finishing the edge of the ornament, is carried over the silver-gilt threads, and secures them. This metal thread is passed from one portion of the design to another, forming loops to assist in uniting the whole pattern. The leaves and flowers are partially worked in coloured silks. The reproduction is the exact size of the original specimen.
Plate No. 38.
Detail of Cut Linen, embroidered with Coloured Silks and Silver gilt and Silver Threads. Italian, late 16th Century [100 - 1891].
Plate No. 39.
Door-hanging. Saracenic, 17th Century [53-1898].
Plate No. 39.
Door-hanging. Saracenic, seventeenth century [53 - 1898]. In brick-red coarse linen. The design is chiefly composed of circular forms, cut away, and the openings bound with piece silk on the cross; the edges have been turned in and hemmed. These silks are deep indigo, pale blue, a light sage-green, straw, and buff. There is an interlining of thick canvas, and a dull red silk on the reverse side.
Plate No. 40.
Back of a chasuble. Italian, seventeenth century. 4 ft. 4 3/4 in.; greatest length, 2 ft. 11 in. [58 - 1891.] The linen foundation is entirely covered with various coloured floss silks laid down and stitched over with long parallel silk threads (couched). The design consists of two large corresponding leafy floral scrolls, each springing from a calyx or cup of acanthus leaf, towards the bottom of the chasuble, in the centre; between the scrolls are two balanced groups of triple stems, with flowers and leaves. About the neck is a border with a wavy line of leaves, and from the neck downwards, across various scrolling stems, flowers, and leaves, are two parallel yellow stripes, joined at their lower ends by a short stripe. The ground of the design is of white floss silk laid down and couched.