Despite its Swedish origins, the pattern and palette of our Frude cloth reminds us of old rustic and humble French striped fabrics. However, the heavy weight and tight weave elevate the fabric beyond this and lend a very smart feel.
The front face is heavily speckled with the white and taupe weft yarns which soften the boldness of the strong navy, red and white vertical stripes. The marled ‘oatmeal’ ground is warm-toned. The reverse side shows all the stripes in clearer focus and is softer to the touch.
Until fairly recently in southern Sweden and Denmark there was a strong tradition amongst women and girls of weaving colourful striped textiles for use in the home. The existence of an abundance of these domestic textiles is first clearly recorded at the beginning of the 19th century in surviving written inventories of the assets and estates of the deceased by a firm of Swedish undertakers. However it is thought to have been a tradition with its roots stretching back earlier than this time.
200 years ago these rural places had no commercial industry producing textiles or furniture, so items required for the home simply had to be made yourself! Fathers would teach their sons woodworking so they could build houses and furniture, and mothers would teach daughters to spin and weave and stitch, amongst many other skills for near-self sufficiency.
Techniques, skills and decorative styles were passed directly and continuously on from one generation to the next. Handicraft was a way of life and immense pride was found in producing something exceptional for yourself and your family. There is no time schedule to rush the process if you yourself are the customer; and we must imagine this to be all the more true in a time when resources were harder to come by and so were more valuable.
It is due to these circumstances that so many extraordinary and uniquely hand-woven striped pillows and textiles, amongst other exceptional domestic items, have been found in these regions. We have collected a huge archive of these fabrics over the years, and began an ongoing project in 2018 to recreate our favourites from our collection.
We chose to create these new fabrics in a mill in Burnley in Lancashire, in the north west of England. A town in a region with the most fascinating history; 250 years ago being the place which saw the birth of the industrial revolution, becoming the epicentre of the worldwide industrialised cotton spinning and weaving industry, and marking Great Britain as the leading commercial and trading nation of the age.
Textile production in this area is a now just a tiny fraction of what it once was at its peak 100 years ago, but thankfully one or two weaving ‘sheds’ and teams with the skills do still remain. Proudly woven in Great Britain!
- Name: Frude
- Range: Stripes
- Colour: Oatmeal / Navy / Red
- Composition: 92% cotton, 8% other recycled fibres
- Total fabric width: 152cm
- Useable fabric width: 150cm
- Repeat size: 8.3cm
- Minimum order: 2 metres
- Available in increments of: 10cm