Rare, unusual and interesting antique costumes and textiles; for museums and collectors looking for that extra special piece, for new and established collectors and for those with a modest budget who want to adorn their person or home.

Barron & Larcher

Rare piece. An excellent example of British Textile history designed in 1931 and printed shortly after at Painswick, Gloucestershire by the two friends.


Carnac hand block printed furnishing linen by Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher, the natural coloured ground with red stylised repeat design, 9 in; 24 cm repeat. 32 x 19 1/2 in w; 82 x 50 cm w


This was clearly a curtain and has therefore been washed. It would look good mounted up and framed, either in perspex or conventionally. See notes below on special print effects.


My thanks to Andy Horn of www.craftspace.co.uk for pointing out that the fabric is shown in the 1931 edition of the Decorative Arts Studio Yearbook. See: ARTICLES Phyllis Barron and Dorothy Larcher.  Phyllis Barron (1890-1964) revived the art of hand block printing as early as 1905. Barron's training as a painter (Slade) and knowledge of French peasant textiles led her to pursue natural dyes on unbleached linens, cottons, organdie and silk, producing muted colours. Block printers usually cover the block with a layer of fine wool known as flocking which gave an even overall colour to the print . Barron prefered not using the wool giving instead a dry, slightly bleached look. She also used a different gum as a thickening agent for the dye giving a mottled effect. In 1923 she was joined by painter Dorothy Larcher (1884-1952) who read that Barron needed an assistant. Having lived in India for a number of years where she observed dyeing and hand block printing techniques. Their patterns were either geometric or floral, printed in one colour, although two and three colours were used early in the 1930's. This design was based on a sketch of the stone carvings that appeared on pre-historic sites at Carnac in Brittany, France. Designs were generally made based on natural forms, rather than historical ones. B & L did not create work for the popular market nor were they interested in 1920's and 30's fashion trends. T B & L fabrics were sold in the Omega Workshops and Ethel Mairet's shop, as well as thier own Park Hill, Hampstead studio. In 1930 they relocated to Painswick. There were commissions for the Duke of Westminster's yacht The Flying Cloud and later for his houses in England and France; Curtaining for the Bishop's Throne at Winchester Cathedral; textiles for the new Fellow's Dining Room, Girton College, Cambridge. In 1928 Muriel Rose started the Little Gallery, Sloane Street, London where they held an exhibition. Designs at this tended to be copies of old fabrics and were dull and lifeless. Barron & Larcher were designing and printing textiles in the early English tradition.* * Orpin Gaylard, Marjorie Phyllis Barron. Dorothy Larcher Textile Designers and Block Printers p 32 The Journal of The Decorative Arts Society no 3, 1979. Powers, Alan Modern Block Printed Textiles,/i> p 32 Jackson, Lesley 20th Century Pattern Design p 70 Barron & Larcher fabrics can be seen at the Crafts Study Centre, Farnham, Surrey www.csc.ucreative.ac.uk

Price: £300 | $430 | €390

Ref N°: 6626a