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In Filoforme - Abstract ENG

FILO FORME anno 3 n. 7



In this issue, we present fabrics that have been used in unusual ways to create objects that are not normally part of the history of fabric and fashion. The intention is to clarify how fabric can be the determining factor in the differentiation of products in various sectors. Among these sectors we have looked at the editorial field. Fabrics for Books presents an analysis of the use of textiles in refined bookbinding. The singularity of use in this genre in different periods is exemplified by three volumes dating from the last quarter of the Eighteenth century. In this context we see the emergence of the manufacture of textiles as artistic creation – almost taken as works of art in themselves – to which promotional messages as well as messages of pomp and splendor help to increase the rarity of the books’ contents. Due to the fact that The fabric prints at the Civic Library in Verona comprises a genre that is more diffused, it can be used as a valuable point of comparison for our interest in the editorial sector. In this field textiles were used as materials that could confer individuality to the printed texts. With these objects the value added by the embroidery – a very important aspect of the final product – is always carried out in relation with the decorative style of the period in which the text was printed. A useful “Appendix” compiles the materials present into individual reports, pointing out their technical aspects and composition. The article by Stefania Portinari deals with textiles that have caused social and economic changes in the history of clothing and fashion. She turns her attention to textile chemistry in order to recall those fabrics that were considered unique, not only for their richness but also because they contributed in making the article of clothing, still part of haute-couture – for example, the evening gown – more widely accessible and not a fashion reserved only for the elite. These fabrics and materials, which in the twenty-first century we define as antiques, the “grandfathers’ of today’s “tecno” fabrics, marked a turning point in industrial research as well as in artistic advances as observed by the impulses in contemporary textile directions. At the end of this issue we have decided to deal with the theme of information-gathering and cataloguing of textiles in the historic-artistic, demo-athropological patrimony; this because we feel that it is the main channel for knowledge with regard to textile history. Therefore, we believe in continuing with the cataloguing and the computer updating we can guaranty for the future an adequate resource for the most diversified research in this sector.
Maria Beatrice Bertone


Fabric for Books.
Maria Beatrice Bertone (page 3)

The fabric created and used specifically for bookbinding and their motifs is analysed within the panorama of textile production of the Eighteenth century. The clarification of the stylistic types coupled with the meanings and references to the printed texts demonstrate that these fabrics were unique, and produced individually for a single object, enriching and refining the work. The research on these fabrics, probably produced in an area around Vicenza, has brought forth the individual character of the production undertaken in the local silk factories for use both commercially and in advertisement.

“Truly very special” and “unequaled” The fabric prints at the Civic Library in Verona
Stefano Franzo (page 8)

Among the collection of unbound sheets in the Civic Library in Verona there is a nucleus of 27 prints executed on fabric and dating from the 1740’s and the 1840’s (10 of them are Eighteenth century prints, 15 are Nineteenth century and 2 of them are undated). These textile pieces, each one in different conservation condition, are all fairly singular in type due to their fabric support. They can be placed within the tradition of celebrative objects – for weddings or other occasions – that was diffused during the 1800’s. The objects are all of differing quality and were pulled from the presses of different printers. They are made up of printed decorations and in some cases embroidery, satin ribbons and sequins that demonstrate a certain care in the aesthetic effects created.and belonging to Gina Lollobrigida.

New fabrics for luxury clothing. Chemical fibres and fashion
Stefania Portinari (page 16)

Fashion in the Twentieth century and the new chemical fibres: fabrics created by industry and technology that within a very short period are used in dresses that dreams are made of, designed by the most important fashion ateliers in the world. In tracing the historical foundations of the marriage between large firms and fashion stylists, between culture and propaganda, the economic history of the period and the dreams of an upper-class society destined to become less and less elite is laid out. The fibres that appeared immediately at the end of the Second World War and were economically widely diffused as a consumer good soon became the yearning of the masses to own beautiful clothing. It was the attempt of the “happy few” to maintain their own privileged level through dress designs made in artificial fibres but with splendid and unattainable perfection. The strange names of the fabrics – merlinova, acetate, cupro and rayon – pin point the strange “ingredients” in the new fabrics. These dictated the unrestricted progress toward modernity: from the salons of the fashion shows at Palazzo Grassi during the Fifties to the fabrics of today.

The cataloguing of the fabrics and the data bank in the Regional Center for Cataloguing and Restoration of Cultural Heritage in the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region
Michele Villotta (page 21)

Cataloguing as a means and a tool for knowledge in the context of historic-artistic patrimony in Friuli Venezia Giulia. A short introduction into the diagnostic methods applied to cataloguing using new computer applications that are meant to provide more updated and specific data and images. Presentation of a sample record that contains a specific textile attachment allowing for any type of textile object to be catalogued.