Category Archive: Historic Textiles

The Mystery of Charlemagne’s Missing Textiles

Here’s a little puzzle to start things off: La chaine est soie, la trame poil de chèvre, matiere qui fournit la chèvre du Thibet et que nous connaissons sous le nom de cachemire.… Continue reading

Disappointed in Research

Back in 2012, I was reading the Iliad with an online group, and I was amazed when I got to these lines about the famous Helen: She [Iris] came on Helen in the… Continue reading

Textiles in Hiding

At the National Museum of the Mighty Eighth Air Force in Pooler, Georgia, among all the aircraft and equipment, is an exhibit that shows the stories of pilots downed behind enemy lines.  One… Continue reading

Shadows of the Past

Three years ago when I was photographing this dress from the 1800s, I got to wondering how it would look by candlelight, the way it was seen when it was new, 170 years… Continue reading

A Cloud of Witnesses

This old photograph captures the essence of what I try to preserve in this blog – ordinary people, finding a sense of competence in knowing a skill of handwork — maybe even finding… Continue reading

Tracking Textile History – the Mycenaeans

When we left the fascinating archaeology of Crete a few posts ago, it was about 1450 BC. From the evidence we have it seems the rulers in the palace of Knossos were big… Continue reading

I Love Linear B!

When Knossos was excavated, thousands of small clay tablets were found.  Some of their symbols were pretty easy to figure out:   and some weren’t. (I am drawing them myself, because I have… Continue reading

Tracking Textile History: The Minoans, Part Two

Before we get into more of Minoan textiles, we need to take a short look at how this culture was brought back from three thousand years of oblivion. There is a fast-paced, readable… Continue reading

Tracking Textile History: The Minoans

Okay, you know the Minoans, right? Those bull-leaping snake-handling fresco-painting labyrinth-building people? “Bull leaping, fresco from the Great Palace at Knossos, Crete, Heraklion Archaeological Museum” by George Groutas – originally posted to Flickr… Continue reading

Bayeux Tapestry – Books, Part Two

Reading about the Bayeux Tapestry made me want to know more background information on the Normans – where did they come from?  Why did they want to expand into England?  I mean, the… Continue reading