Material World

Textile terminology has evolved from myriad sources but often the etymology involves the name of a place or town. Muslin comes from Mussolo, the Italian for Mosul, Iraq, where mussolina/muslin was produced. In other parts of Asia it was known as ‘daka’, named for Dhaka, Bangladesh (where it’s thought the fabric originated). I always wondered about the story behind Liberty’s Tana Lawn fabric – it’s named for Lake Tana in Ethiopia where the cotton for the fabric was grown, while lawn isRead more

Rosalind Wyatt

Rosalind Wyatt is a British artist who loves words. Initially trained in calligraphy, she went on to study textiles at the Royal College of Art. Her practice combines text and textile, and she works from her studio in London. Stitch commissions include luxury bespoke gifts for private and corporate clients from around the world, including two stitched garments for Fortnum & Mason of London, which now hang in their boardroom. She has developed her own technique of ‘writing with a needle’ combining textRead more

garance, indigo + gaude

Garance, indigo and gaude are words which refer to the colours produced by plant dyes used in traditional fabric dying. Garance produces a red dye, indigo a blue dye and gaude a yellow dye. So yes, it’s really just red, blue and yellow in fancy outfits, in the world of pre-19th century European fabric design. Garance refers to a red dye made from varieties of the Madder plant. Common Madder (Rubia tinctorum) was used extensively in French textile production. A commonRead more