A rich and diverse sale of Costumes, Accessories and Textiles, including the John Newall Collection of Guna Molas from Panama and Columbia, and Albanian Costume, a good Private Collection of Victorian Costume, a Private Collection of Millinery and Costume Accessories from the late 19th century to the 1940s including 1920s dresses and evening coats, and an archive relating to North Country quilter Mary Lough.
Knitting Stick Collection - many of the items purchased from the 'Terrible Knitters of Dent', the last surviving being Betty Hartley and Elizabeth Middleton both from Dent.
The knitters would gather in one cottage at the end of the day and knit by the firelight, telling old tales and singing old knitting songs. If a stitch was dropped the knitter would call 'Turn o'wer a pe-at' to give out a bit more light. Needles 'pricks' were made of curved wire sharpened on the doorstep, wool was called 'garn' and was rough and hard-wearing. The garn was delivered from the merchants in Kendal and knitters paid for what they produced.
Everyone knitted, men, women and children, the money they raised from knitting made up the difference between 'poverty' and just being 'poor'.
Mary Lough Collection
Mary Lough (1886-1968) of Chapman Hill Farm, Witton le Wear, was a leading expert of handmade quilts in Co Durham. Mary learnt to quilt at a young age helping her mother sew by candlelight, she became the first North Country quilter to formally teach quilting, by setting up classes in Weardale and local areas. By the 1950s she had achieved a national reputation through exhibiting at the V&A, Beamish among others, and quilting for clients all over the UK, Australia and America.
One of Mary's students who she helped achieve her City and Guilds Diploma in 1952 was Amy Emms MBE. Her quilts represent the motifs familiar with North Country quilts including swirling intricate patterns, curvilinear shapes, feathers, sheaves of corn, plate/circle, fan, roses, lovers knots, cables circles.
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