Stomachers were fashionable V shaped panels which were worn directly over the stays or corset, pinned in place on the bodice of open robes and filled in the space between the robings of the gown. They emphasised the flat breast area, a result of tight whalebone laced stays. The tabs shown on this example provided a convenient means of attachment. The design of this stomacher is influenced by the East, with fine embroidery and couching. The background has a vermicular or meander design, known as Queen Anne style. Love seeing the original ink drawing under the embroidery. The pattern would have been outlined on the linen before stitching, and was copied from one of the many available published sources.
A large exotic flower emerging from a seed at the base of the stomacher, with elongated entwined leaves, with seed pods and small flowers emerging from the stems, embroidered in seven different colours including rich pink, pale pink, terracotta, lime green, ivory, pale blue and banana twisted silks, with silver and gold couching caught down with palest banana shade silks, on a natural linen background embroidered with a vermiculate design in palest green silks, the edges with a natural linen tape, the top with two linen tabs (for pinning the stomacher in place), curved lower edge.
Length 11 in; 28 cm. Top width 7 in; 18 cm
Very very good. It was only when I looked at the piece under a magnifying glass that I saw two pin head size light brown marks right at the bottom.
Historical Fashion in Detail. The 17th and 18th Centuries Avril Hart and Susan North. Stomachers p 200-2.
Fashion in Focus 1600-2009 Treaures from the Olive Matthews Collection. Grace Evans. p 43
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