Dyer's record book

Thomas Ratcliffe1812–1823

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum
New York, United States

Leather bound book containing fabric swatches and recipes for printing various colors. Fabric swatches have been both block and cylinder printed, and many have used resist techniques.

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  • Title: Dyer's record book
  • Creator: Thomas Ratcliffe
  • Date Created: 1812–1823
  • Viewing Notes: Multiple Choice: From Sample to ProductTextile printer Thomas Ratcliffe included in his personal record book dye recipes for printed textiles, using natural dyes and mordants. Ratcliffe immigrated to the United States in 1819, bringing with him his record book and expertise.
  • Inscribed: On flap of book, "T. Ratcliffe". Other names are included on various pages within the book. See research file.
  • Exhibitions: Color by the Yard: Printed Fabric 1760 to 1860, CHM, Nov. 3, 1987 to March 13, 1988.New York: Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, "Multiple Choice: From Sample to Product," Nov. 9, 2007 through Sept. 11, 2008.
  • Dimensions: H x W x D: 19.1 x 19 x 7.6 cm (7 1/2 x 7 1/2 x 3 in.)
  • Bibliography: Reference to Ratcliffe in Philip A. Sykas' article "The North West Pattern Book Survey" from Textile History, 32 (2), 156-74, 2001.Page 166-167: Another source of evidence is books brought from England by emigrants to the United States. The early US calico printing industry was very much based upon the skills and expertise brought by British immigrants. In the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum is a pocket book signed by Thomas Ratcliffe 1812-13. Ratcliffe was a partner in a calico printing firm at Loveclough until 1815, when he formed a new partnership with his brothers at Ewood Bridge; this enterprise went bankrupt in 1819, and Ratcliffe emigrated to America.
  • Type: Dyer's record book
  • Rights: Museum purchase from Au Panier Fleuri Fund
  • Medium: Medium: leather, paper, cotton Technique: (samples) block and roller printed on plain weave foundation