A pair of c1780's sleeve ruffles - alterations
WARNING! Please read with care before purchasing.
The last of the Mary Ireland Dresden pieces [although there is lots of other Mary Ireland to come!], this is a pair of sleeve ruffles, of single layer, that seem to have been used by Mrs Ireland in her exhibitions. [See the Blog]
Sadly, although of a lovely, light Dresden design, they have both been pieced and one has been so altered that the best of the Dresden pattern is completely lost.
I am quite sure that Mrs Ireland 'rescued' them from a damaged state, so that she could use them to decorate one of her 18th Century gowns. On a magnificent dress, the damage would not be noticed as long as no-one looked too closely! She was a very good needlewoman, and I am quite sure she would not have changed them unless there was considerable damage. She removed the damage, but was left with a very patched specimen! I recommend that you only purchase them for the same reason - to 'finish' an 18th Century dress.
Beginning with the best one, it has one quite large patch to the upper edge, going into the linen band [which would be used to tack stitch to the chemise below the dress]. However, the Dresden style design is complete and very pretty.
The second one has several patches - in fact I can't really make sense of it! Mrs I. kept the size of each the same somehow, but lost the best of the detail.
In addition, each sleeve band has 'right' and 'left' pencilled on them, so that her model would know how to wear them.
They are a pale cream colour with a few tiny stain spots. They are not fine muslin, so possibly a lightweight linen.
The main description forms the condition report and it is important to read it carefully before you purchase please.