Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Bark with no Bite

This piece of fabric is waiting to be used for
just the right project.  It is in
Weekend Cottage, Clear Lake, Mn
Cute market bag at Exit 55
made of novelty bark cloth

Check out these items at Exit 55 in Fergus Falls
The bottom cloth has an unusual geometric
design which gives it a 70s mid century feel.

Here are some fun fabrics that I keep in my "hope" chest!
Actually, I'm hoping to get organized and use them for
pillows and curtains.  The top left and right are not
bark cloth, but certainly have the right designs.
Ok, so really I'm referring to a textile called bark cloth which I know most of you are familiar with.  It became popular for home furnishings from the 1940s thru 1960s, mainly because US servicemen coming home from duty in Hawaii brought lots of this bright colored fabric with them.  If you want to more of its very interesting history, be sure to look it up on line!  It has enjoyed a resurgence in popularity the last few years as people have discovered the "retro" look and all of the decorating and clothing lines that accompany it.  Bark cloth has been used mainly for drapes, upholstry, pillows etc. since it is a nubby tightly woven fabric which wears well and hence it's name because some believe the texture resembles the bark on trees.  Well, maybe.  There are several other types of textiles that resemble bark cloth, but they aren't as heavy and don't wear as well.  There are many patterns, but probably the most recognized are those with large often gaudy flowers and leaves.  However, if you look carefully, there are many other designs which are fun and very beautiful.  Since linens, textiles of all types and vintage clothing are among my favorite topics, I wanted to share some pieces that are in my personal collection or that are for sale in various shops.  I have also included several pieces of fabric that aren't bark cloth but resemble the type of designs used in it.

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