Richard Smith is a man who knows about textiles.
From 1984-2005 he ran the family’s weaving company E&S Smith in Bradford and now has a multi-pronged business with weaving at its heart, including the sale of historic textile designs as wall art.
A newcomer to the Textile Society’s annual fair on Sunday, April 24 in Manchester’s Armitage Centre, he says: “Over the past 35 years I’ve collected archive textiles and quantities of specialist point papers once used in Jacquard weaving mills. These drawings formed part of the process that created a design in a Jacquard woven fabric. For the society’s fair I will be selling original point papers and related artwork as well as our A3 wall art prints.”
Smith added: “Buyers for originals have included private individuals seeking something different or producers of interior textiles who want to find a starting point for ideas.”
Interest in antique and vintage textiles has gone from being a niche market to a wide-ranging collecting and dealing sphere.
To give an idea of the variety offered at the fair, the 45 exhibitors include the Point Paper Art Company (run by Smith), Mary Cooper with fans and samplers and Clive Rogers and Hannah Whyman with Indian and central Asian textiles.
Meg Andrews deals in antique costume and 20th century artist designer textiles, while vintage buckles will shine on Vintage Things Forever’s stand and Martine Joule’s offerings include silk toppers and Victorian lace bonnets.