Acquired from the costume designer Phoebe de Gaye
These samples of printed linen, seven stapled into a piece of folded card, and three loose, were sent to the donor’s mother, Kathleen Morgan, by the block printing textile company Crysède of Cornwall. Morgan was a Scottish artist who throughout the 1930s taught art in a school in Oban, and who made her own clothes – her jacket of Crysède linen can be seen as a Related Item.
The Crysède company was known for its ready-made garments and accessories made of silk and, from 1928, linen hand block printed with bold and expressive designs often based upon the landscape studies of its founder and owner Alec Walker. These were sold in the company’s shops that were opened in Edinburgh and the more affluent towns of England, along with fabric by the yard that was suitable for both clothing and furnishings, and to broaden its market even further a successful international mail order service was provided. As can be seen from these small samples, ordering fabrics in such large scale designs, their repeats ranging from around 12 to 16 inches, required a certain amount of confidence from Crysède’s customers. Many were kept in production for some time, having been designed a number of years earlier.
The stapled samples can by seen one by one in this section of the website. The three loose samples are included in this image; one is an alternative colourway to ‘Cherry Tree’, amongst the stapled samples, the others are two colourways of ‘Madron Carn’. The Carn was an outcrop in the village of Madron, near Penzance, that was famed for its ruined chapel and wishing well.