A table’s dress

Development of a jacquard-tableware-collection

Tablecloth – Rites and history

The gathering for a meal has since archaic times a socialbuilding, elementary force. It is part of the existential ground forms of living togehter. It is building orientation, gathering and connecting. More than simple eating it has social, ritual, till to religious roots.vgl. 1 This is for the circle of familiy and friends as well as working communities, society and states.vgl. 2

For the collective meal there is important the mindful covered table. As an inviting gest the table covered with a textile is symbol of hospitality and community as central virtues of human cultur.

An archaic form of the table is the altar. In christianity thinking onto the last meal of christs with his disciples as Mensa domini, the table of the lord named. Fixed component of the altar is an altarcloth out of handwoven white linen. Togehter with clothes for the other altar vessels symbol for the grave cloth Christi.vgl. 3

„The white altar cloth is belonging to the holy banquet. Laying always on the altar, remembers onto its fundamental meaning (…) for the church service for the community. For the altar cloth is used handwoven pure linen. It (…) should end at the front edge of the altar and even short before, so laying onto the altar in form of a runner.“4

„The oldest cloth of white linen hat its meaning out of the pure fine linen, the corps of the christ has been wrapped iinto after have been taken from the cross. The altar cloth is therefor since ever one of the elemtary clothes of the altar, so that the beeing naked of that has been always similar to beeing a desacration of a holy place. Only in day of the Märtyrerwoche, at days before eastern (…) a symbolic remembering to christ have been lost by his disciples and robbed his clothes..“5

Finest woven linen clothes belong to the earliest testimonies of textile art, thousand years before christ. Beeing a cultural heritage, that has been engraved into the collective memory.vgl. 6

Precious tablecloth is fixed part of the hope chest of brides. As whitelinen have been crafted by hand in yardage enough till beeing old. Trousseau seamstresses went from farm to farm and occupied for parts of the sewings. In gordeaous painted and ornamented chests and cabinets clean treasured a high good. The trousseau has been over the centuries a sign of wellfare and the step into a own life.

The meaning of the tableclose symbolises the phrase “To cut the tablecloth”. A gesture that terminates a friendship, finishes a community or even narrowest familiar ribbons: „In the middleage married couples, that wanted to devorce legaly, had to cut a tablecloth. Each of them maintained one of the pieces. One of the awfulst honor punishments was the cutten tablecloth for noblemen in the middleage. If the tablecloth has been cutten with them, it meant they were excluded from the community.“7

From the noble familie of the earl Eberhard reports Uhland after the battle near Reutlingen 1388 from his son:

„He met his old father alon at midday meal, a frosty welcome! No word is heard in the room. The father in front is sitting Ulrich at the table, with his eyes down to the table, wine and fish has been brought. There the old man takes his knife and speaks no word with that, and is cutting between both of them the tabecloth atwain.“8

vgl, 1. Riedel, Joschka: Einflüsse des antiken Symposions auf die christliche und jüdische Mahlpraxis. Geog-August-Universität Göttingen 2013. S.1 ff.
vgl. 2. Trattner, Irma: Repräsentation mittelalterlicher Fest- und Tischkultur im Bild. Universität Salzburg/Kunstsuniversitä Linz. o.J. (ca. 2011), S. 1-13.
vgl. 3. Tüpker, Ulrike: Kunst aus der Stille. Eine Hommage an die Bildweberei der Henriettenstiuftung. Hannover 2005. S. 39.
4. Verband evangelischer Mesner in Bayern: Die weißen Decken und Tücher auf dem Altar. www.kirchen-bayern.de
5. Heideloff,, Carl Alexander von: Der christliche Altar, ärchälogisch und artistisch dargestellt. 1838 o.S,, aus: Bayerische Staatsbibliothek.
vgl. 6. Mecheels, Stefan u.a.: Kultur- & Industriegeschichte der Textilien. S. 27ff. Bönnigheit. Zu Frage „Ist Flachs die älteste Textilfaser?“
7. Goody, Jack: Zur Geschichte der Familie. München 2002.
8. Uhland, Ludwig: Die Schlacht bei Reutlingen.

Clear line in neutral tones – concept for the collection development

Verästelungen eines Blattes

Groundtheme of the jacquard-tableware-collection is the designing with linear, folded or organic structures and shades. The colour range is inbetween neutreal tones of grey, grey-blue and neutrals. Out of the brainstorming to the theme chaos and order their are associations of leave- and plantstructures, branches, folds, stone and cristalline structures, shades and sihouettes in nature and technique. Collages, drawings and scetches develop. The digital jacquard technology enables the realisation of handdrawn delicate designs in fabric as small series. Inspite of ornamental bindings followed the decision for shaded satins and the reduction onto neutral tones. The finishing followed by hand as contrast to machine realisation and with decent seaming without disturbing machine seam. The material includes linen in the weft and lyocell as warp yarn as fibre out of local wood.

Work flow and technique

Fixpoint are handdrawn designs from pencil, colourpencil, ink or collages.

arbeitsschritte1The designs have been digitalised and reworked in Photoshop, reduced onto the wanted number of greyshades, cleaned in the lines and reworked in the details. For the rapport the designs have been redone at the connecting lines into All-Over. With the bindingprogramm AraWeave the greyshades are transformed into bindings. For to achieve a subtile bindingsvision shaded satins have been choosen.

The weft material is fine linen in Nm 30 to 40 and light grey- to nature-tones. The weft density has been decided onto 27 threads per centimeter for a fabric good laying on the table. The warp density is 48 threads per centimenter with a width of  1,65 Meter.

The tablerunners have been woven cross. So each runner can be designed new. That enables unicate and small series and an experimental approach. The Dreier-Gallierung needs an rapport of 55 Zentimetern. Sometimes rapports of 27,5 Zentimetern have been chosen.

Concerning the designs there were questions like: Whow much clearness should be, whow much reduction, whow many details are possible, whow much fineness, shades, densiness, whow fine or raw line. Straigt lines or scetching feeling. Whow behaves the design during the weaving process, whow during washing, whow optic and haptic. It appeared a serie of woven designs, subtil and distinguished, elegant and individual.