That vanishing trick is down to this amazing print. I was searching Ebay for projects when it caught my eye. This sumptuous print is on a soft cotton barkcloth. I counted 7 colours, and I bet it cost a bomb when it was new.
The seller described it as a former Sportaville skirt, the British makers of quality separates from the 1940s through to the late 70s. Sadly all that remained of this one was the three panels of fabric, and a scrap of waistband with the original label attached.
|The three former Sportaville skirt panels, each is 34" wide by 26" long.|
The Sportaville label on the restored skirt .
Re-making can be harder than making from scratch. I stabilised the top edge with bias binding, which stopped it fraying and going off grain but made it bulkier to pleat. Next time I will remember my silk organza. After trying 4 different pleats all of which looked awful, I turned to Etsy and found a similar barkcloth skirt with stitched down pleats, which I copied. I have left the it un-hemmed as it was only 26" long, and it still had the original over-cast stitching to stop it fraying.
|Scenic print fabric by Marignan|
|Waterfall close up|
|Grand Teint Meuble Marignan - 'Grand teint' apparently refers to the quality of the ink|
I was similarly bewitched by this print too. The indigo and lavender on pale yellow have a kind of other-worldly look. It's a metre plus of furnishing fabric, but I have a feeling it will never be used to make anything. I think I will frame it and put in my stairwell. I now assume this is 1950s too.
Sportaville made their reputation using this kind of high quality fabric, but it's always hard to find out who actually printed them. As well as restorer I feel like a bit of a detective. Marignan were manufacturers from what really seems to be a by-gone era, the quality they achieved was quite supreme, but I think even they would be astounded to see how great it still looks.
When you can see it.