This cream ribbed silk fragment is made of unspun silk filaments. It features a weft faced 2/1 satin weave that achieves a corded effect by thick warp yarns. Flat bands of silver are couched along each warp yarn. All the couching stitches are even and show no diagonal, as one would expect to see in a satin weave. This may suggest that the silver was couched on after the weaving was completed.

The silver of this fragment has tarnished to black, but remains attached better than W-544/E, the other fragment from the same fabric.

This fabric would have likely been used for a man's waistcoat. Silver and gold decoration was popular for fine waistcoats, but very little survives since the metal was melted down. The silver made the garment both delicate and heavy, so it is unlikely that it would have been used for a petticoat or gown, as they were subjected to a lot of movement and used significantly more fabric than a waistcoat.

Date

1775-1800


Material/Technique

Silk, silver


Dimensions

Overall (H x W): 3 in. x 1 1/16 in. (7.62 cm x 2.7 cm)


Credit

Gift of Mary Jane Straka, 1992


Object Number

W-3603


Colors


Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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