Monday, 28 November 2011


This picture, reproduced in a thumbnail size on a back page of W.of  I. was my introduction to buyers in the U.S.  I knew they were all very keen on the original tickings that their ancestors had brought with them when they colonized America, but I had no idea that they were hungry for new patterns that they had never imagined or seen before and were anxious to copy as soon as they could, before their rivals got hold of them.   I was very gratified to have visits from all the top decorators you might have heard of; Lauren, Klein, Brunschwig and many others.  They were all very charming and seemed to enjoy a visit away from London 'and down in the sticks' and  they all asked me for little samples of as many as I would give them - but by this time I had become a canny dealer and would only let them have the whole piece - no messing about with little samples!   I, myself, was so surprised to discover much later, that there was still a wealth of much more elaborate multicoloured tickings in Germany - beyond my reach at the time.  These were really wonderful shaded stripes with up to 17 different shades in them, really skilled weavers' work and with immense possibilities for decorating in new ways.  I found them in a recycling feather factory, (imported into France from  dealers who scoured the charity shops in Germany),  where the feathers were sterilised and re-used for ski wear and bedding, but the stripey covers were just chucked out and sold as rags for cleaning heavy machinery. It was a real treasure-trove find, but another Blog will recount the rather dreadful work of presenting them in  good selling condition.   You would not want to handle them without gloves and definitely not mix with ordinary washday linens! and so they were all carted home in black dustbin plastic liners with a string round the sack-neck in the back of our car, to await disinfection and sanitary treatment at home.


  1. I never tire of this story!

  2. Fascinating! I love reading about your adventures hunting for these textiles! Thanks for sharing!