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Silk Collection

Silk, the epitome of elegance and luxury, has a rich history that spans across continents and centuries

Background imageSilk Collection: Map of the Empire of King Alexander the Great

Map of the Empire of King Alexander the Great (Alexander III of Macedon 356323 BC), from Greece in the west to India in the east. Date: 1807

Background imageSilk Collection: Fashions for 1954

Fashions for 1954
On the left, a caramel coloured restaurant suit in heavy silk shantung, its melting shoulder line, vertically seamed jacket, slanting pockets " are all allies for your pleasant evening"

Background imageSilk Collection: The Royal Bride

The Royal Bride - Queen Elizabeth II portrait - Published in the Illustrated London News November 29 1947 1947

Background imageSilk Collection: Silk moth and silkworm, Bombyx mori, on mulberry

Silk moth and silkworm, Bombyx mori, on mulberry leaves, Morus alba. Handcoloured copperplate engraving drawn and etched by Jacob l Admiral in Naauwkeurige Waarneemingen omtrent de veranderingen van

Background imageSilk Collection: Chiang Kai-Shek / Silk Pic

Chiang Kai-Shek / Silk Pic
CHIANG KAI-SHEK Chinese general and politician

Background imageSilk Collection: Reading Aloud, 1884, (1936). Creator: Albert Joseph Moore

Reading Aloud, 1884, (1936). Creator: Albert Joseph Moore
Reading Aloud, 1884, (1936). Women in classical dress recline while reading a book. Victorian oil on canvas by Albert Joseph Moore (1841-1893). Held at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum

Background imageSilk Collection: Fred Archer

Fred Archer
FREDERICK JAMES ARCHER (1857 - 1886). Phenomenally successful jockey from the 1860s to the 1880s. Committed suicide after death of his wife, and owing to ill- health through excessive diet

Background imageSilk Collection: Twenties flapper girl sitting at a cocktail bar

Twenties flapper girl sitting at a cocktail bar
A flapper girl from the 1920s sitting at a cocktail bar on a high stool. She is slim, wears a slinky dress, and has a cigarette in a holder in her mouth. On the bar is her glass of champagne

Background imageSilk Collection: Victorian silk birthday card, Girl with dog and flowers

Victorian silk birthday card, Girl with dog and flowers by a stream. 19th century

Background imageSilk Collection: Working drawings by William Morris (1834-1896), 1934. Artist: William Morris

Working drawings by William Morris (1834-1896), 1934. Artist: William Morris
Working drawings by William Morris, 1934. Axminster carpet, 1873; Anemone pattern for silk and wool curtain material, 1874 and a painted wall decoration, c1877. From The Listener, 14 February 1934

Background imageSilk Collection: Steve Donoghue by W. Smithson Broadhead

Steve Donoghue by W. Smithson Broadhead
Steve Donoghue (1884-1945), leading flat race jockey of the 1920s, pictured in a portrait by W. Smithson Broadhead specially commissioned by The Illustrated Sporting and Dramatic News

Background imageSilk Collection: Wedding dress of Aphra Farquhar by Worth

Wedding dress of Aphra Farquhar by Worth
A regal wedding dress of white pure silk and antique lace designed by Owen Hyde-Clarke of Worth for the wedding of Aphra Farquhar Fetherstonhaugh to the Earl of Dundonald in 1960

Background imageSilk Collection: Burmese womens native attire

Burmese womens native attire
Women of Burma (now Brunei) in traditional dress, 1800s. Antique hand-colored print

Background imageSilk Collection: Henry Fiennes Pelham Clinton (1750-1778), Earl of Lincoln - Gainsborough Dupont

Henry Fiennes Pelham Clinton (1750-1778), Earl of Lincoln - Gainsborough Dupont
Oil on Canvas 270 x 146

Background imageSilk Collection: Anna May Wong in Tiger Bay (1933)

Anna May Wong in Tiger Bay (1933)

Background imageSilk Collection: Byzantine silk textiles dating from 10th century, Treasury of Ste. Foy

Byzantine silk textiles dating from 10th century, Treasury of Ste. Foy, Conques, Midi-Pyrenees, France, Europe

Background imageSilk Collection: Zoroastrian (Parsee) Beauty - Iran

Zoroastrian (Parsee) Beauty - Iran. Date: 1910

Background imageSilk Collection: Map of Persia (Iran)

Map of Persia (Iran) - all place names in their Latin form. The ancient realms of Assyria, Babylonia Date: 1807

Background imageSilk Collection: Lady Charles Cavendish aka Adele Astaire

Lady Charles Cavendish aka Adele Astaire
Adele Astaire (1896 - 1981) comedy actress and dance partner of her brother, Fred Astaire from childhood until 1932, when she retired from dance to marry the British aristocrat Lord Charles Spencer

Background imageSilk Collection: Mongol conqueror. Chinese silk album leaf, Yuan Dynasty

Mongol conqueror. Chinese silk album leaf, Yuan Dynasty
GENGHIS KHAN (1162-1227). Mongol conqueror. Chinese silk album leaf, Yuan Dynasty

Background imageSilk Collection: Home of a Spitalfields weaver

Home of a Spitalfields weaver
Interior of a Huguenot silk weavers home in Spitalfields, London, showing the weaver hard at work at his loom, while other members of the family work on frames and spools

Background imageSilk Collection: French lady getting ready to go out in her boudoir

French lady getting ready to go out in her boudoir - she check the powder on her nose - " Yes, that is just perfect!" Date: circa 1910s

Background imageSilk Collection: The parable of the laborers in the vineyard

The parable of the laborers in the vineyard: The payment of the denarius. ca. 1500. Second Series cloth. Manufacturing in Brussels, possibly in the workshops of Pieter van Aelst

Background imageSilk Collection: Ballerinas in their dressing room

Ballerinas in their dressing room
Ballet dancers prepare for a performance in their dressing room. One dancer is seen applying make up, while the feet of another await her silk ballet slippers. c.1947

Background imageSilk Collection: Britannia and Eve magazine, August 1940

Britannia and Eve magazine, August 1940
Front cover illustration featuring a smiling woman, clasping her hands with joy and thinking very happy thoughts. She wears a orange silk dress, bright red lipstick and her hair in finger waves

Background imageSilk Collection: Victoria Diamond Jubilee celebration bookmark

Victoria Diamond Jubilee celebration bookmark
A beautifully embroidered silk bookmark to commemorate Queen Victorias Diamond Jubilee

Background imageSilk Collection: Silk Weaver 1855

Silk Weaver 1855
A Spitalfields weaver at work

Background imageSilk Collection: Humming Bird Silk Print

Humming Bird Silk Print
Decorative silk print showing two green birds (possibly Humming Birds) nest building

Background imageSilk Collection: Diagram of a Jacquard loom, 1838-1845. Creator: Unknown

Diagram of a Jacquard loom, 1838-1845. Creator: Unknown
Diagram of a Jacquard loom, 1838-1845. French text: Explication de la mecanique a la Jacquard. Bascule ou levier aux fourchettes des quelles est enfilee une chaine fixee elle meme a la caisse de la

Background imageSilk Collection: Along the River During the Qingming Festival, Qing Court Version, hand scroll

Along the River During the Qingming Festival, Qing Court Version, hand scroll
3928698 Along the River During the Qingming Festival, Qing Court Version, hand scroll, 1736 (ink and color on silk) by Chinese School

Background imageSilk Collection: Marie Salle dancing, 1732, (1908). Creator: Unknown

Marie Salle dancing, 1732, (1908). Creator: Unknown
Marie Salle dancing, 1732, (1908). Mlle. Salle Dansant (1732). Marie Salle (1707-1756) was a French dancer and choreographer

Background imageSilk Collection: Pocket watches and wristwatches 1929

Pocket watches and wristwatches 1929
A selection of pocket watches that register the minutes, seconds and fifth of seconds and a golfers pocket watch that has pure white metal case and also ladies wristwatches with lever moverment

Background imageSilk Collection: A Pair of Silk Stockings by Cecil Harcourt

A Pair of Silk Stockings by Cecil Harcourt
Promotional postcard for A Pair of Silk Stockings by Cecil Harcourt. First produced at the Criterion Theatre, 23rd February 1914

Background imageSilk Collection: Typical paper lanterns illuminated at night, Hoi An, Vietnam

Typical paper lanterns illuminated at night, Hoi An, Vietnam
Vietnam, Hoi An. Typical lanterns at night

Background imageSilk Collection: Saucy Postcard - Lady lovers bemoan (?) bad weather

Saucy Postcard - Lady lovers bemoan (?) bad weather
Saucy Seaside Postcard - Two lady lovers bemoan (?) the bad weather, which opens up new opportunities for fun... Date: 1946

Background imageSilk Collection: Chinese man and a Malaysian woman

Chinese man and a Malaysian woman
Chinese businessman and a Malaysian woman in traditional attire, 1800s. Antique hand-colored print

Background imageSilk Collection: Advert for Stockings by Bear Brand 1933

Advert for Stockings by Bear Brand 1933
Bear Brands newest expression in silken luxury. Dull lustred, gossamer thread and softest strength. 1933

Background imageSilk Collection: Promotional card for the Oriental Carpet Manufacturers Ltd

Promotional card for the Oriental Carpet Manufacturers Ltd - Turkish Company with head office at Smyrna (Izmir), Turkey and branches in London, Paris, Constantinople (Istanbul), New York, Cairo

Background imageSilk Collection: Design for Dress Silk or Print in brown and black

Design for Dress Silk or Print in brown and black. Body colour. Gouache on tracing paper. Silver Studio. 1929

Background imageSilk Collection: A pair of Angels

A pair of Angels
A very beautiful chromolithographic postcard depicting a pair of angels, one bowed in prayer and one holding a long thin scroll. Date: circa 1910s

Background imageSilk Collection: Arrested by an undercover police officer

Arrested by an undercover police officer
An undercover female police officer springs her Honey Trap on an unsuspecting criminal, who goes from a jolly evening with a fetching lady to staring down the barrel of a revolver!

Background imageSilk Collection: Victor Stiebel / Day Dress

Victor Stiebel / Day Dress
Design by Victor Stiebel (1907-1976) for a pink linen and silk surah summer dress. Scooped-out bodice is filled with a lilac spotted scarf & large knot tied to the belt

Background imageSilk Collection: Magdalen Aston, Lady Burdett - John Michael Wright

Magdalen Aston, Lady Burdett - John Michael Wright
Oil on Canvas 73.7 x 61

Background imageSilk Collection: Diana

Diana
Artist: Titian (after) - Title: Diana - Date: N/A - Original Medium and Size: Oil on Canvas 68 x 115.5

Background imageSilk Collection: Showing her Knickers

Showing her Knickers
A young woman lifts her dress to reveal her drawers which have decorative vandyked trim. She also wears a cloche hat, silk stockings and tango heel shoes

Background imageSilk Collection: The Lady and the Unicorn. Artist: Anonymous master

The Lady and the Unicorn. Artist: Anonymous master
The Lady and the Unicorn. Found in the collection of Musee national du Moyen Age (Musee de Cluny)

Background imageSilk Collection: Advert for Gorringes womens underwear 1927

Advert for Gorringes womens underwear 1927
Advertisement for F. G Ravissant undergarments, the newest fashion of wrap-around corsets lightly boned, with dainty embroidered silk lacing and ribbon and buttoning. 1927

Background imageSilk Collection: Advert for Gorringes womens clothing 1928

Advert for Gorringes womens clothing 1928
70th year anniversary offers, smart sultan coat of dull satin, crepe-de-chine printed dress and a elegant coat in crepe-de-chine givree a fascinating mixture of artificial silk and wool. 1928



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Silk, the epitome of elegance and luxury, has a rich history that spans across continents and centuries. From the Map of the Empire of King Alexander the Great to The Royal Bride, it has adorned royalty throughout time, symbolizing opulence and refinement. In Fashions for 1954, silk took center stage as it draped gracefully on women with impeccable style. Just like a Twenties flapper girl sitting at a cocktail bar exuding confidence and allure, silk dresses accentuated their every move. The timeless beauty was captured in Reading Aloud by Albert Joseph Moore in 1884. Its delicate threads whispered stories from generations past while Working drawings by William Morris showcased intricate patterns woven into this luxurious fabric. Fred Archer's mastery behind the lens immortalized Burmese women donning their native attire made from vibrant silks. Their colorful garments reflected their culture's vibrancy and traditions. A red-headed girl seated in a sheer red dress evoked passion and sensuality through her choice of clothing. Silk clung to her curves like second skin, leaving little to the imagination but everything to desire. As Aphra Farquhar walked down the aisle wearing her wedding dress designed by Worth, all eyes were captivated by its ethereal beauty. Silk cascaded around her like a cloud of pure enchantment as she embarked on her journey towards eternal love. Good Morning. David Wright's artwork depicted an elegant woman wrapped in silk sheets as she greeted each day with grace and poise. The softness against her skin mirrored the gentle embrace of morning light. Even historical figures such as Henry Fiennes Pelham Clinton (1750-1778), Earl of Lincoln - Gainsborough Dupont recognized silk's allure when they chose it for their portraits. It became synonymous with power and prestige during those times. Silk is not merely a fabric; it embodies artistry, craftsmanship, and sophistication that transcends time.