Saturday, 26 January 2013


This beautiful striped drill fabric is part of a coat specially woven for cows and oxen in the Pyrenese area of France near Spain. The flies would sting and irritate the beasts while working in the vineyards and these coats protected them - note the coloured stripes, blue and red, often used to denote French nationality, also typical of the Basque country. This material was also used for farm sacks - very handsome and wish I could find some in good condition. Also shown is a strange bit of macrame work in coarse hemp, used to protect the oxen eyes from flies - genuine folk art and a little treasure! This is the last of several sets I have had.. In the past I have bought and sold hand-made halters for cows and horses, beautifully woven and plaited which became tie backs for curtains of oatmeal -textured hemp cloth. Fab! The cow coats were all used to provide cushion covers on the terraces of a Pacific Ocean villa of well-known musical composer and stand up well to sun, rain and ocean spray. I find it so exciting to make use of these lovely old cloths and trims - more anon! Nov. 14th A fantastic FIND! I wrote above 6 months ago and by pure chance came across an unused roll of this lovely hemp sackcloth only 10 miles from here at the American Museum Fair!!! Am now waiting for a client with maybe a big barn to furnish for parties, etc., this would be so ideal for doors and windows and sofas - rustic and draught-proof. Equally good for outside use on terrace furniture - as used by Sir Andrew L-.W. in the Caribbean.



  1. Hello Elizabeth, What fun to read your post about the cow coat. I purchased one at a shop in Toulouse before I met up with Kaari Meng's group last summer. It's a scarf on my living room sofa now. It even has a strap attached at one end for the tail to fit thru with additional straps that tied under the belly of the animal. Donna Cavanaugh, MN, USA ps. I'm enjoying my Emproidery Book.

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