The purpose of this thesis is to, from an institutional approach, study how the Stockholm importers within the textile sector adapted their foreign trade to the change in economic policy 1720 through 1738. The focus is to investigate to what extent the introduction of new laws, regulations etc. can be an explanation for what happened to Stockholm’s foreign trade, mainly imports, particularly textile imports during the period. It is mainly the economic policies that had been enacted during the Hornian government and their effects that have been studied. This is a period that has seldom been studied in other research. Read More: http://uu.diva-portal.org/smash/record.jsf?pid=diva2:171825
The production technology of ‘stockings in the English style’ spread throughout Italy in the later seventeenth century. The article considers knitted manufacture in Italy, from its sixteenth-century beginnings with hand-knitted items, through to the adoption in some Italian cities of the knitting frame invented in England at the end of the sixteenth century, and finally discusses the case of Padua where the use of the knitting frame was opposed.
Alum was an important mordant in the dyeing of wool and cloth and was used by tanners, illuminators and painters, while copperas was used as a mordant, and as a black dye, as well as in the manufacture of ink. Both became increasingly important during the late 16th and early 17th centuries in England because of increased production of colored cloth.
The commercial value of a quantity of yarn depends on two things, the length and the fineness. This article describes how practical methods of measuring these quantities led to systems of units that were noteworthy mainly for their profusion and complexity. The story covers the period from 1600 to the present day, and examples from the woollen, linen, and cotton trades are given. Progress towards standardization, both nationally and internationally, was slow. Even when opportunities for simplification arose, the trades were reluctant to abandon their customary measures in favour of ones that would have been simpler to use and understand.
Originally published: London, Cass, 1962.
Covers the period from the later eighteenth century onwards.
The place and character of domestic textiles in the farming economy of the Derbyshire district known as Bowden Middlecale, England, in the 17th and 18th centuries are examined. Focusing in particular on four hamlets within this district, the writer assesses the extent to which the domestic textile industry was a basis for the introduction of new workshops and factories for cotton–an entirely new fabric to the region–at the end of the 18th century. He subsequently contrasts the New Mills area with other textile regions that were also undergoing changes, especially the Pennine Lancashire fringe, in order to highlight the particular circumstances of the New Mills area and therefore emphasize the regional variety of the cotton industry in its early development. He shows that in New Mills and adjacent hamlets, the particular nature of the rural industry in the ‘long’ 18th century made the region appropriately prepared for the age of cotton, with evidence indicating a direct path from domestic industry, through workshops, to factory industry.
Includes many extracts from inventories and accounts, and an appendix transcribing a probate inventory of 1720.
Considers the evidence for the export of the knitted caps to the New England colonies in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.
Note on the information available in the East India Company archives.
Considers the written history of pins and pin manufacture as well as the typological evidence and their metal composition.
Discusses the role of the Vanners family, who were of Huguenot extraction, in the English silk industry from the eighteenth to the twentieth century.
Explores the evidence for the ready-made clothing industry in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Considers the silk gauze manufacture in Paisley in the eighteenth century.
In the second half of the sixteenth century a range of mixed-fibre, lightweight, cheap textiles were developed and were known to contemporaries as ‘new draperies’.
The Glasgow ‘Tobacco Lords’ were the subject of a classic study, but there has been no overall survey of their successors, the Scottish cotton masters. This article draws on a rich and surprisingly underused source, the wills and probate inventories of Scottish cotton merchants and manufacturers, to give a fuller picture of a group, which played a key role in Scotland’s early industrialisation. It also casts light on the early decline of the cotton industry in Scotland by demonstrating how, as profits declined, the cotton masters, who had always had diverse business interests, began to move into more lucrative areas of investment, such as coal mining, iron manufacturing, railways, shipping and overseas trade.
Does not contain a section specifically on clothing or textiles, but many useful references can be found by using the ‘traded goods’ section of the index.
From the ‘Notes and Queries’ section of the journal.
Includes discussion of eighteenth-century British textiles. Illustratations of excise stamps may assist dress historians and curators in interpreting stamps and marks on fabrics.
Covers the period from the late sixteenth century to the twentieth century.
Leaden seals were used as part of a system of quality control in the textile industry in England and elsewhere from at least the fourteenth to the eighteenth century. This paper examines new evidence provided by English seals, concentrating mainly on the textiles themselves, and also considers some seals of a different character which relate to other aspects of the cloth trade.
The catalogue covers 350 lead cloth seals, both English and European, with related items. The seals were lost mainly in London between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Dicusses the retail trade in Bath in the eighteenth century (including the clothing and fabric trade) with emphasis on the impact of ‘warehouses’.
Considers the changing fortunes of the textile industry in the two most northerly of the Yorkshire dales, during the later eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Takes as a starting point for discussion a notebook (the ‘Burns Journal’ or ‘G.K. No. 51’) of Gregory King (1648-1712). The article includes extracts from a range of King’s writings, and an appendix: Gregory King’s ‘Annual Consumption of Apparell, 1688’ taken from the ‘Burns Journal’.
Includes several hundred illustrations. Shows the types of signs used within the dress and textile trades, and is an extremely valuable guide to London shops from 1650 to 1800.
Through its exploration of the intersections between the culture of the wool broadcloth industry and the literature of the early modern period, this study contributes to the expanding field of material studies in sixteenth- and seventeenth-century England. The author argues that it is impossible to comprehend the development of emerging English nationalism during that time period, without considering the culture of the cloth industry. She shows that, reaching far beyond its status as a commodity of production and exchange, the industry was also a locus for organizing sentiments of national solidarity across social and economic divisions. Hentschell looks to textual productions – both imaginative and non-fiction works that often treat the cloth industry with mythic importance – to help explain how cloth came to be a catalyst for nationalism. Each chapter ties a particular mode, such as pastoral, prose romance, travel propaganda, satire, and drama, with a specific issue of the cloth industry, demonstrating the distinct work different literary genres contributed to what the author terms the ‘culture of cloth’.
William Lee’s invention in 1589 of the stocking frame was remarkable, because it was an invention of a complete new machine. At the time, it stood on its own as a production machine with many small parts made to a high level of accuracy. This paper outlines the growth of hand-knitting in the 16th century and shows how Lee’s machine derived from peg knitting. Constructional details and the mode of operation are closely described. An account is given of the development and use of the frame-knitting machine in Britain and France. Finally, the invention is related to the state-of-the-art in other machinery of the time.
Traces the history of the craft of passementerie in York, from the fifteenth to the nineteenth century.
The account book of this town workhouse provides detailed records of a clothmaking enterprise.
The early emergence of the entrepreneur in the English cloth industry was commemorated by early modern writers such as Skelton, Leland, Deloney, Aubrey, Fuller and Defoe but remains neglected in recent studies exploring industrial expansion and innovation c. 1500-1700. In response to the gap in the current historiography, this article examines the emergence of entrepreneurship, the growth of organizational experimentation and the short-lived development of the proto-factory in the Berkshire towns of Reading and Newbury. It explores the entrepreneurship of industrial capitalists such as John Winchcombe (the illustrious ‘Jack of Newbury’), Thomas Dolman, Thomas Aldworth and William Kendrick and the nature of their achievement and motivation. It assesses the impact of market forces, locational advantages, product specialization and social attitudes in unleashing and shaping entrepreneurial investment from the expansion of cloth-making in the towns in the fifteenth century to de-industrialization in the seventeenth century.
Discusses the felt-hat-making business in Cardiganshire which flourished in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.
Most histories of the silk industry in England begin with the arrival of French refugees to Spitalfields in London, yet silk was prepared for embroidery in Macclesfield by the Middle Ages and the silk button trade was well-established by the early modern period. Through the study of probate evidence, this article aims to redress the imbalance in the historiography of the silk industry in England away from the focus on the activities of the Huguenots in the early modern period, and away from the silk weaving in order to show that the silk button industry succeeded not through technical innovation, but through marketing a luxury item in sufficiently small packages to make it accessible to a wide portion of the population. The silk button industry can be viewed as having laid the foundations in east Cheshire for the transformation of the silk industry into weaving cloth in the mid-eighteenth century.
The long period from the Restoration to the accession of Queen Victoria saw a rise in ‘popular consumerism’ affecting may aspects of British society and commerce, nowhere more so than in the market for textiles and clothing. Consumers were offered an increasing range of finished goods, rather than merely materials, but many of these were available only in larger towns. To access goods, customers often relied on the long-established process of commissioning at a distance through the offices of family members, friends or business contacts, acting as agents. This formed a significant channel for elite and popular consumption.
Considers the rise of the ready-made clothing trade in England (the garments largely produced by women) and its clash with the tailoring guilds. Illustrated by items in the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto.
This work examines a trade that covered the backs of sailors and soldiers, that shirted labouring men and skirted working women, that employed legions of needlewomen and supplied retailers with new consumer wares. Garments, once bought, returned again to the marketplace, circulating like a currency and bolstering demand. The agents in this trade included military contractors for clothing, female outworkers and dealers in used clothes. Each was affected by a changing demand for new-styled ‘luxuries’ and necessities in apparel.
Discusses the calico trade and the events that converted such commodities from exotic to staple. Considers the demand for florals, and argues that these fabrics reshaped the material idioms of English life, framing new cultural and economic patterns.
Covers the period from the late seventeenth to late nineteenth century.
A pair of tamboured French waistcoat shapes in the V&A’s collection bears Customs stamps from the reign of George II. Examination of both the garment and Customs records held by the National Archives reveals the illegal commerce in textiles in eighteenth-century Britain, and the reasons why such goods were taxed or banned. The political, social, administrative and fashion contexts of textile smuggling are discussed, as well as its numerous methods of execution, allowing speculation on the exact progress of the waistcoat shapes from embroiderer’s workshop to museum storeroom.
The article focuses on the eight year period, 1784-1792, during which the Reverend Cartwright designed and developed two machines of lasting siginificance for textile production: the power loom which operated in Doncaster and Manchester, and the woolcombing machine.
There was a large and rapidly expanding cloth finishing industry in London in the late fifteenth and the first half of the sixteenth century. London merchants brought provincial cloth to the City, some of which was finished prior to export, and some was finished for the City’s expanding clothing industry. The success of the London Fullers and Shearmen was reflected in their merger to form the Clothworkers’ Company in 1528, and their acceptance ten years later as the last and twelfth merchant company in the City. The paper traces both the economic progress of the company and some of its principal members, and the difficulties that the Fullers and Shearmen faced as they decided to merge, and then to become accepted as one of the leading companies in the City.
Indenture made between William Lee and George Brooke in 1600 about knitting frame invention.
Dyeing wool for the thousands of kersey cloths produced annually at Newbury in Berkshire in the middle decades of the sixteenth century took place before export. Substantial statistical evidence reveals that dyeing took place on a proto-industrial scale in Newbury; Newbury clothiers John Winchcombe II and Thomas Dolman had their own dyehouses, and other Newbury clothiers were also producing dyed kersies. Woad, madder and weld were the most important dyes, and the scale of dyeing is indicated by the purchase of woad by the ton. This article uses the Newbury experience to challenge the common view that English cloth exports during the sixteenth century were exported undyed.
Well illustrated, and includes colour plates from sample books.
Includes an appendix, ‘Representative examples of weavers’ stock-in-trade, 1660-1730’, compiled from probate inventories.
Discusses the branch of Norwich industry concerned with the manufacture of fabrics for mourning wear in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, known as the ‘Black Branch’.
Includes essays on: technical processes of linen production in the Manchester area (particularly during the seventeenth century); manufacture of cheap, plain linens and sailcloths during the eighteenth century; several Kirkham manufacturers of sailcloth during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.
Includes short sections on the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries.
‘Although the aim of this study was to assess the involvement of women in employment outside the home and the effect it had on their lives, it grew out of an interest in the history of clothes and an interest in early shop-keeping.’ Occupations discussed include: washing/mending; manufacture of grave clothes; clothing retail; making of bespoke garments; milliner; seamstress; button-maker; embroiderer; mantua-maker.
The establishment of mantuamaking in Scotland is examined. The earliest reference found to this trade in Scotland dates to the end of the 17th century. Until that time, tailors took for granted that they had the sole monopoly of making and selling men’s and womens’ outer garments, and the Scottish craft incorporations sought to keep their hold on this monopoly. By the 18th century, however, these organizations were certainly beginning to lose their grip as women entered the clothing trade with mantuamaking. The way in which exactly Scottish mantuamakers learned to make their mantuas is not known, but it may well be that women traveled to London and brought back mantuas, which they unpicked at home. The trade spread all over the country despite conflict between mantuamakers and tailors, who sought to contest women’s right to make mantuas. However, the tailors eventually lost their case, and the craft monopoly officially ended with legislation in 1843. The writer goes on to discuss the working conditions of mantuamakers until the 19th century.
From the ‘Documents and Sources’ section of Textile History. Translation of an account written by Maximilien de Lazowski, a visitor touring around Norfolk in 1784.
It appears clear that after about 1625, the evolution of London’s tailoring trade was subject to a complex process of change that would result in the transformation of its structure and organization in less than half a century. By 1625, the process by which a numerous but minority group of large employers and retailers came to dominate the tailoring trade was already apparent. The growing prominence of the clothing salesman from the second quarter of the 17th century is one of the obvious signs that incipient capitalism was starting to take hold in London’s tailoring trade. The impact of capitalists on the London tailoring trade between 1625 and 1675 was clearly profound, with the Merchant Taylors’ Company reporting in 1633 to the municipal government that the number of ‘able’ freemen had greatly diminished: This seem to be confirmed by the emergence in 1634 of a coherent body of journeyman tailors. The 1649-50 agitation of ‘divers poore men being Working Taylors’ strengthens the impression that many less wealthy freemen were starting to struggle to acquire or maintain the status of independent producer.
Probably the most neglected aspect of the history of the guilds and livery companies of early modern London is the ubiquitous subordinate organisation known as the ‘yeomanry’ or ‘bachelors’ company’. Many narrative histories of individual companies make only passing reference to the existence of a yeomanry, and dismiss the organisations as generally transient and insignificant. Per contra, the yeomanry of at least one of the major City livery companies represented to an extraordinary degree a company within a company in the later sixteenth century.
By the time Elizabeth ascended the throne, the yeomanry body of the Merchant Taylors’ Company had acquired effective responsibility for the vast majority of the Company’s membership. To most contemporary and modern observers, the dazzling wealth, magnificent ceremonies and eminent members — entitled to wear the prestigious livery gown of the Company, and generally drawn from the mercantile and civic élite — were the most intriguing aspects of the history of the Merchant Taylors’ Company. To the poor freemen below the livery these matters were of less significance.
Part I of this article examines briefly the origins, nature and functions of the sub-company. Part II explores the degree to which this body represented the continuation of the traditions of the medieval guild of London tailors and continued to embody the aspirations and interests of its artisan members.
While it is commonly understood that whalebone played a prominent role in shaping fashionable stays and hoops of the eighteenth century, the connection between the fashion trades and whaling has been little discussed. This article addresses this lack, providing, in the first instance, an overview of procuring and processing whalebone in preparation for market. It then examines the dissemination of whalebone within the fashion trades, drawing upon the rich collection of primary papers detailing the business partnership ventures of a London haberdasher and a Lord Mayor. The final part of the article analyses stays with a view to determining the functionality and qualities of whalebone which made it an indispensable commodity in the creation of eighteenth-century stays. In doing so, it draws upon the previously unknown diary of a regional staymaker, and explores the roles played by women in determining the extent to which stays were worn, and thus the impact their consumption had on those who plied the whalebone trade.
Includes an inventory of the haberdashery in the shop in 1571.
Sheep on the Shetland Islands produce a fine, soft wool, which is used to produce handknit lace. This cottage industry has been renowned since the 16th century, but has declined with mechanization. The art of Shetland lace has survived, however, due largely to the efforts of Edward Standen, a merchant from Oxford, and Margaret Currie, a native Shetlander of the 19th century. Techniques for producing Shetland lace are detailed.
Drawing on evidence derived from probate records, the writer discusses the relationship between urban and rural areas in the textile industry in northwest England in the early 18th century. The strong rural focus on production throughout this region–mainly in weaving and spinning–and the rural dominance of manufacturing in all sub-regions offers strong evidence for the sort of ‘bottom-up’ growth (drawing on traditional skills and a large and willing base of rural labor) that is suggested by proto-industrial theory. However, the important role played by the urban system in the finishing process and specifically the marketing and putting-out of textiles denies the subservient position attributed to it in this model. Although the picture that emerges is that of a network of towns that combined production from surrounding areas into an economic system based on the staple export of cloth, specialization according to cloth type cut across the proto-industrial interdependencies and undermined any uniformity in the relationship between town and country, with the particular role of each varying from place to place.
The writer discusses the issue of servants’ clothing in 18th-century England. In the opinion of the elite at this time, no group of workers was more guilty of sartorial extravagance than servants, primarily female household servants. Historians have generally endorsed these opinions, but some have argued that it does not necessarily follow that servants contributed directly to an expansion in the overall demand for clothes, as their access to expensive fashions was only made possible by hand-me-downs from their employers. The writer goes on to examine the evidence of the records of Robert Heaton, a Yorkshire worsted manufacturer and small landowner in the later 18th century. He asserts that, if Heaton’s servants were representative, most female servants bought not only cheap everyday clothes but also decorative and stylish items, without having to rely on hand-me-downs. He concludes that female servants at this time thus comprised a financially circumscribed but huge and free-spending market for new and fashionable clothing.
Although mercers have long been recognised as one of the most influential trades in medieval London, this is the first book to offer a comprehensive and detailed analysis of the trade from the twelfth to the sixteenth century. The variety of mercery goods (linen, silk, worsted and small manufactured items including what is now called haberdashery) gave the mercers of London an edge over all competitors. The sources and production of all these commodities is traced throughout the period covered. It was as the major importers and distributors of linen in England that London mercers were able to take control of the Merchant Adventurers and the export of English cloth to the Low Countries. The development of the Adventurers’ Company and its domination by London mercers is described from its first privileges of 1296 to after the fall of Antwerp.
This book investigates the earliest itinerant mercers and the artisans who made and sold mercery goods (such as the silkwomen of London, so often mercers’ wives), and their origins in counties like Norfolk, the source of linen and worsted. These diverse traders were united by the neighbourhood of the London Mercery on Cheapside and by their need for the privileges of the freedom of London.
Extensive use of Netherlandish and French sources puts the London Mercery into the context of European Trade, and literary texts add a more personal image of the merchant and his preoccupation with his social status which rose from that of the despised pedlar to the advisor of princes.
After a slow start, the Mercers’ Company came to include some of the wealthiest and most powerful men of London and administer a wide range of charitable estates such as that of Richard Whittington. The story of how they survived the vicissitudes inflicted by the wars and religious changes of the sixteenth century concludes this wide-ranging study.
Includes information on the European silk industry.
Although it is well known that the literature on embroidery includes investigations into professional and amateur practice, the interaction between professional pattern drawers for embroidery, professional embroiderers and amateurs of this art remains to be fully examined. To this end, this object lesson examines a group of designs for embroidery in order to provide evidence of the technique for which they were employed; the dates and inscriptions on the designs demonstrate their use as a business archive, while the names of the clients reveal a social network. The final part of this article focuses on trade cards and suggests how the designs illuminate the negotiation between retailer and customer.
Originally published by Manchester University Press in 1931.
Discusses a group of associated finds from an excavation site in the centre of York. The focus is on the period between the ninth and fifteenth centuries, because of the nature of the artefacts. Includes a chronological survey of the find contexts of the artefacts, from the time of the Roman occupation to the seventeenth century; also, a consideration of the archaeological evidence in a wider historical context (e.g. identity of weavers and consumers, scale and significance of textile production). A select catalogue lists all objects illustrated or mentioned in the text.
In the second half of the sixteenth century a range of mixed-fibre, lightweight, cheap textiles were developed and were known to contemporaries as ‘new draperies’.
The Warner Textile Archive has been housed at Warners Mill, Silks Way, Braintree, England, since February 2005. This nationally important archive is a unique record of the history of textile manufacture since the 18th century. It includes not only every example of woven and printed fabric produced by Warner and Sons but also examples produced by other companies. It features an extensive collection of original works commissioned from important artists and designers by Warner and Sons.
Focuses on the period from the mid-sixteenth to the mid-eighteenth century. Appendix A lists documentary sources; Appendix B lists probate values of Leicestershire stocking-frames 1660-1711.
This is a revised edition of the author’s 1987 Ph.D. thesis. The first section covers the rise and decline of the industry from the late sixteenth century to 1940; the second section considers the people involved in the industry (manufacturers, lace-makers, designers, and retailers). Illustrated with numerous monochrome plates.