QUILTS & FABRIC: PAST & PRESENT
Sunday, March 29, 2009
Document & Reproduction: Hartfield "Meryton"
The document print is the original print on which a reproduction is based. For the "Meryton" reproduction print in my Hartfield collection (the ivory print on the left) the document print is a piece of antique fabric that may have been a ruffle for a chair. I have a piece big enough that you can still see the selvage edge. There are a few unintelligible letters and several numbers on that very wide selvage.
The document print looks to be a combination roller/wood block print. The background is what was called a fancy machine ground, printed by a copper roller finely incised with pattern. The feathery leaves seem to be more colored shapes than line so I am guessing they were applied with a wood block, possibly a wood block with some wires inserted to print those outlines. The original print might be about 1800 or so because of that fancy machine ground background, but I'd guess not too much later. Notice the break---a wrinkle in the roller--- in the ground pattern that isn't reflected in the leaf pattern, an indication they were printed at different times.
If you'd like to learn more about early prints you'll want to subscribe to my e-club at C&T Publishing, "Barbara Brackman's Clues in the Calico". Each month you get online information about an early print style plus a pattern for a traditional medallion border or two. Click here for more information CluesintheCalico.com.
Posted by Barbara Brackman at 7:59 AM