This probable (Gibb_and_MacDonald) scarf/wrap (shawl) dating back to the first half of the 19th century was originally a part of the Dr Joan Coleman Collection. It was first purchased at an auction in Christie’s, London, and later The Zay Initiative managed to acquire it from Kerry Taylor Auctions in 2020.
Dr Joan Coleman began collecting shawls in 1976 and developed her life-long passion for collecting. She was a regular at the London salerooms of Christie’s, Sotheby’s, and Phillips – three of the most outstanding auction houses of the period in the world – getting to know the dealers and learning in the process. She acquired vast knowledge and dedicated hours carefully cataloguing her ever-growing collection. She intended to loan her collection to different museums and institutions for the benefit of learning and education. Her collection is one of the largest and the finest private shawl collections to have ever graced the world with shawls ranging from Kashmir, (Paisley), Edinburgh, Norwich, France, and Iran.
This is a fine cashmere ivory (shawl) dating back to the early half of the 19th century. It has a wide woven border densely embellished in a multitude of colours (bright red, indigo, pink, moss green, and black). The motifs are floral and paisley. The borders at the (warp) ends are broader and dons nine large paisley motifs.
This shawl was perhaps manufactured by one of the famous specialist shawl manufacturers of Edinburgh Gibb_and_MacDonald in circa 1840s. It is woven of fine cashmere wool, decorated with stylised paisley patterns in different shades of bright red, and black with hints of green and blue, it is a remarkable blend of both European and Oriental aesthetics. These full-body-length scarves/long shawls were used as wraps by women over their usual habits and were a mark of aristocracy and money.
Although manufactured in the 1840s, this scarf has a lingering effect of the 1820s style prevalent in the subcontinent where the long shawls had not only a border pattern that is full of floral designs, but also a gallery that weaves around the entire circumference of the central white field.
Entry by: Rajruba