This is a design for embroidery on muslin or gauze. It is probably for the border of a petticoat to a woman's open gown or for the border of the gown itself. Women wore gowns that were open in front to reveal the petticoat. This design is for the embroidery along the border above the bottom hem of a petticoat and also for such a border on the gown itself. The design repeated so that this pattern continued around the border.
The motif of bows with tassels appears to be generic and occurs on a length of mull (a light muslin) embroidered in coloured silks in a private collection and in a 'Pattern for a Train, Drawn by Mr Styart in Plate IV of <u>The Fashionable Magazine</u> published n London in 1786.