Elaborately designed braiding sample book
FLECHTSCHULE [School of Braiding] of „Marie Bilkenroth“. Leporello with 24 patterns on 23 plates (one double-sided). S.l.: s.a. [ca. 1880].
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FLECHTSCHULE [School of Braiding] of „Marie Bilkenroth“. Leporello with 24 patterns on 23 plates (one double-sided). S.l.: s.a. [ca. 1880]. 8° (map), 18,5:12,5 cm (plates with patterns). Original ruby red cloth with gilt calligraphic title printing as well as blind stamped frames with ornamental decoration.
The present Leporello with 24 braid patterns made of blue and black varnished paper provides a detailed insight into methods and materials, aesthetics and media of this technique of applied arts and its spread in the second half of the 19th century. In the age of the Biedermeier braiding (similar to embroidery) had gained importance as a leisure activity for bourgeois and noble women and was cultivated within the framework of tea companies or family meetings. As representatives, bearers and intermediaries of these hobbies, women like the former owner of the presented item, a certain „Marie Bilkenroth“, created elaborately designed sample books often titled "Flechtschule" (Schools of Braiding) and had them privately bound and published. Like the preceded they show examples of increasing complexity from beginner’s patterns to complex multi-colored ones. Around 1900 "Flechtschulen" found their way into the Arts and Craft-movement due to the simple, geometrical forms they conveyed, contributing therefore to the aesthetics of modern applied art as such.
Very well preserved specimen indeed.