Textiles and the Triplett Sisters

To Dye: The Barks


In our last blog we briefly discussed quercitron (bark primarily from the Eastern Black Oak in the US) used in combination with cochineal. But quercitron was used on its own to create a color fast yellow. In the US local mills advertised the grinding of barks, which could be used for home dyeing or mulch. To see an 1844 ad about a Bark and Grist Mill follow this link.   In England the use of quercitron inspired a whole color scheme known as “drab style.” The 15 year patent for the dye ran out in 1799, which caused the drab style to be particularly fashionable in fabrics until 1807. Quercitron was used for block printed chintzs until about 1815.   Cedar and tanbark are two additional barks that are used for dyeing which creates a deep...
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Creative Spark!


We have a new adventure planned for those who like to explore a different avenue to learn or be inspired. We are creating video content for the C&T Publishing online vehicle: Creative Spark. These classes and lectures can be accessed in your own time and from wherever you prefer. Up first is the West African Indigo Resist Dye Class, which is a great intro to the techniques and history. This class is perfect for: 1) those who want to try the techniques with guidance. Both video and written instructions are provided, simply order the dyeing kit to get started, 2) those who want a refresher to remind them of the info, and 3) for those who don’t really want to get into the mess of dyeing, but still want to learn everything, can simply watch and...
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Cheater Cloth: A Love, Hate Relationship


It seems like many textile people have a strong feeling about printed patchwork, they either love it and collect it or they hate it and consider it a cheat way to make a quilt. Hence the nickname of cheater cloth which according to Barbara Brackman was used for the first time in print in 1910 by “America’s Textile Reporter.” In 1929 Ruth Finley’s “Old Patchwork Quilts” book refers to this style of fabric as Faux Patchwork and Geometrical Chintz, a term still in use at the Winterthur Museum. Surprisingly “patchwork prints” the phrase used in the 19th century ads has been around since the mid-18th century, according to Deborah E. Kraak’s paper in Uncoverings.While the “pretend patchwork” seems to have been popular in the 1830s-1840s, the Centennial Exposition of 1876 caused an explosion in the printed...
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Huguenot Spitalfields Silks


Many experts consider the Huguenots legacy textiles, specifically weaving. As the Huguenot refugees began fleeing the religious persecution in France in the late 1500s, their skills impacted textile industries in Netherlands, South Africa, Colonial America, to name a few and perhaps the best known…Spitalfields, England. Currently, there is an emphasis of cotton for quilts, but in earlier times, silk was more accessible for quilts. Spitalfields is a district in the East End of London, which was an area of fields and gardens until the streets were laid out for Irish and Huguenot silk weavers. The Huguenots hoped to avoid the restrictive legislation of the City Guilds, by living outside of the city. The Huguenots set up looms weaving in their homes with “weaver windows,” In 1638 Charles I established the Spitalfields Market initially to sell “flesh,...
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The Times, They Are A-Changing!


The Ephesian philosopher Heraclitus phrase, “only constant in life is change” is used frequently to explain the changes in 2020. For me it is the words of Bob Dylan that fits this year’s cataclysmic events, “you better start swimming or sink like a stone, for the times they are a-changing.” The Triplett Sisters are very fond of water and are doing our best to swim through these changing waters. Without the interaction with you through our programs at the guilds, we continue to morph our business and will retool as needed. Here are some of our recent changes. First, we are offering specially selected fabric in our Etsy shop and on our website. The Dutch Heritage fabric is an example of fabric not readily available in the US, which we are importing. We also have multiple...
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