{Fabric of Time: Rayon} Part 3: A Versatile Fibre

{Fabric of Time: Rayon} Part 3: A Versatile Fibre

The properties bestowed on rayon through different manufacturing methods and processes provided almost limitless variety. By the 1930s rayon was available in a profusion of different fabrics, from crepes to velvets, satins, chiffons and gabardines.

{Bookshelf} Feed Sacks: The Colourful History of a Frugal Fabric

{Bookshelf} Feed Sacks: The Colourful History of a Frugal Fabric

In Feed Sacks: The Colourful History of a Frugal Fabric, Author Linzee Kull McCray explores the history of the humble feed sack, from a plain canvas sack to patterned and colourful bags that were repurposed into frocks, aprons and quilts by thrifty housewives in the first half of the 20th century.

New fabric design: Butterfly Mail

New fabric design: Butterfly Mail

Here’s my entry to this week’s limited colour palette Spoonflower design challenge. As a lifelong collector of ephemera and philately, the travel-themed novelty prints of the 1950s featuring stamps and luggage labels have always appealed to me. My aim was to create a design that would call back to those original 1950s prints.

{Fabric of Time: Rayon} Part 2: What's in a Name?

{Fabric of Time: Rayon} Part 2: What's in a Name?

Despite the hype surrounding the wonders of artificial silk, early rayon suffered from an image problem. Manufacturers were often coy in their advertising, frequently avoiding the term “artificial” in favour of euphemisms. It was time to give the new fibre its own identity.

{Bookshelf} 1950s Fashion Print by Marnie Fogg

{Bookshelf} 1950s Fashion Print by Marnie Fogg

I can't get enough of vintage novelty "printspiration"; my Pinterest boards are full of novelty designs from the 1940s and 50s - atomic-inspired designs, conversational prints and abstracted florals. What's great about this book is that it puts 1950s fashion textile design in context. The introduction explains the social and artistic influences of the post-war era, including the 1951 Festival of Britain and modern innovations in production processes such as the introduction of an automatic screen printing process in 1957. 

The book is arranged into five sections: Abstraction; Narrative, Novelty & The Jive; Artistic Licence; Kinetic; Domestic. Images include reproduced print adverts and sample cards from textile manufacturers as well as full-page prints of fabrics themselves. Each chapter provides additional social context for motifs, style and application, along with commentary and designer/manufacturer details and technical specifications for sampled designs.