This is a Nightcap. It is dated 18th century and we acquired it in 1952. Its medium is wool embroidery on linen and cotton ground, silk binding, silk and metallic tassel and its technique is embroidered using chain, buttonhole and stem stitches on plain weave. It is a part of the Textiles department.
This 18th-century hat, called a nightcap, is decorated with crewel, a wool yarn often used to embroider linen. Known as crewelwork, this technique was frequently applied to nightcaps, where it was worked into bouquets of exotic and imaginary flowers and winding stems. Similar motifs also appeared on colorfully dyed chintz, an Indian cotton textile that was widely used in Europe during this period. Although some crewelwork was completed at home, this nightcap was probably made by a tailor, like much of the fine clothing at the time. It was assembled by joining four panels of embroidery and turning up the cuff, which was embroidered on the opposite side. As powdered and curled wigs were standard for men of most classes during this period, this lavish nightcap would have been seen by only the most intimate company.
This object was
Richard Cranch Greenleaf (American, 1887–1961).
It is credited
Gift of Richard C. Greenleaf in memory of his mother, Adeline E. Greenleaf.
Its dimensions are
H x diam.: 22.9 x 17.8 cm (9 x 7 in.)
Cite this object as
Nightcap (France); wool embroidery on linen and cotton ground, silk binding, silk and metallic tassel; H x diam.: 22.9 x 17.8 cm (9 x 7 in.); Gift of Richard C. Greenleaf in memory of his mother, Adeline E. Greenleaf; 1952-47-3