New to Damask, a range of accessories in Liberty print fabrics – perfect Christmas gifts
Damask have chosen some of the most popular Liberty prints, classic & contemporary for a range of cosmetic and wash bags. Perfect for Christmas presents, available on their website: http://www.damask.co.uk
Liberty London is one of the best known department stores in the UK. They are renowned for their range of ‘Liberty prints’ – in particular their Tana Lawn cotton.
Since I first started dressmaking over 40 years ago, Liberty print cotton has been a favourite of mine. Over time I have used them to make my own clothes, patchwork quilts, smocked dresses and nightwear for my children. When I started work, my first job was as a cloth buyer for a fashion company. This often involved the re-colouring of prints to offer garments for sale in different colourways. I have always been fascinated by the way a print can be transformed by changing the colours in it. A pretty pastel print can be turned into a bold contemporary print. A classic print can become vibrant with the change of colours. (See examples below.)
The history of Liberty London
Arthur Liberty the founder, began his career in textiles. In 1875 he started his own business named ‘East India House’ where he sold Oriental imports. These included rugs, ceramics, decorative objects and textiles which were fashionable at the time. Demand for their beautiful fabrics grew so Liberty decided to import undyed fabrics. He then had them hand printed in England in the style of Oriental fabrics. At this point, Liberty started marketing their fabrics as ‘Made in England’ and the distinctive British brand was established.
Whilst travelling in East Africa in the 1920s, Liberty buyer William Dorell discovered silk like cotton close to Lake Tana. Back in Britain, the silk like threads were spun into a lustrous form and screen printed with brilliant ink. This became the fabric that is now known worldwide as Tana Lawn.
In the 1920s, Liberty began to produce miniature floral, paisley & abstract prints that became known as ‘Liberty Prints’. Their fabrics have become best sellers worldwide with over 150 prints to choose from. Available in different qualities including Tana Lawn for clothes & accessories, silk for scarves, and even PVC for wash bags.
Nearly a hundred years on, Tana Lawn is recognised as a unique part of the Liberty heritage. The product of a bespoke production process: hand-drawn by the in-house design team and screen printed in their factory close to Lake Como in Italy, where over 150 different designs are produced. Tana Lawn cotton is by far the most popular – it’s distinctive lightweight hand-feel and translucent softness make it a versatile favourite. It is ideal for nightwear, blouses and shirts and is the perfect fabric for little girls traditional smocked dresses.
The best-known pattern was French in origin and is an Art Nouveau design created by R. Beauclair in 1900. It has been produced in colourways from shocking pink to ochre and elephant grey but in it’s original colourway of mid-blue, burgundy and purple (below left), it remains a signature Liberty print fabric so we have chosen this for cosmetic and wash bags on our website http://www.damask.co.uk
This famous Liberty print was designed by William Morris in 1883. It was part of a group of designs incorporating animals with flowers and has been a classic on Tana lawn since 1955, we have used the popular colourway on the left below for cosmetic and wash bags on our website http://www.damask.co.uk
This is a smaller version of the Liberty London Classic design ‘Mitsi’, the original being designed by Gillian Farr, a member of the design studio in the 1950s. Recoloured, the pattern takes on a different hue from pretty pastels to vibrant reds and hot pink used in our range of wash bags and make up bags available on our website: damask.co.uk
From The Botanical Garden Collection, this modern watercolour Liberty print is a study of flowers, ferns and succulents and represents a rich collection of plants gathered from around the globe.
The vibrant green colourway (in the middle) is used in our range of wash bags and make up bags on our website: damask.co.uk
Among the oldest designs Hera is named after the Greek goddess associated with peacocks—the bird’s feathers were a fashionable Aesthetic Movement motif during the last quarter of the 19th century. Designed in 1887, it features the iconic peacock feather pattern.
Ciara is a print taken straight from a popular 1960s Liberty scarf and has been reworked into a vibrant and colourful pattern.