Visiting Sleeping Beauties: Reawakening Fashion? You must join the virtual exhibition queue when you arrive. If capacity has been reached for the day, the queue will close early.

Learn more
Cover for Fashion & Virtue

"Fashion & Virtue: Textile Patterns and the Print Revolution, 1520–1620"

Speelberg, Femke
48 pages
60 illustrations
View More Publication Info

This Bulletin discusses the Met's extensive collection of Renaissance textile pattern books, used primarily by women to embroider clothes and accessories. The practice of embroidery was seen as a virtuous endeavor, and textile pattern books, published with great frequency from the 1520s onward, were designed to inspire, instruct, and encourage "beautiful and virtuous women" in this esteemed practice. Straddling the disciplines of early printmaking, ornament design, and textile decoration, these works help shed light on the crucial period when the concept of fashion as a means of distinguishing individual identity became fixed in Western society.

Libbretto nouellamete composto per maestro Domenico da Sera...lauorare di ogni sorte di punti, title page (recto), Domenico da Sera  French, Woodcut
April 12, 1532
Textile Fragment, Cotton, other fibers; plain weave, printed, and painted
10th–11th century
Fragment, Cotton and linen, Spanish
15th–16th century
Piece, Silk, Spanish
16th century
New Inventions of Modern Times [Nova Reperta], The Invention of Book Printing, plate 4, Jan Collaert I  Netherlandish, Engraving
Multiple artists/makers
ca. 1600
Dish (coppa umbonata), Maiolica (tin-glazed earthenware), Italian, Gubbio
Italian, Gubbio
ca. 1530
“The Fifth Knot”. Interlaced Roundel with Seven Six-pointed Stars, Albrecht Dürer  German, Woodcut
1521 before
The Angel of the Annunciation (Cartoon for an Embroidery), Raffaellino del Garbo (also known as Raffaelle de' Capponi and Raffaelle de' Carli)  Italian, Pen and brown ink, brush and brown wash, highlighted with white gouache, over black chalk on paper washed brown; outlines of design and framing outlines pricked and with traces of rubbed black pouncing dust
Manuscript album of designs for lace and embroidery, Anonymous, German, 16th century  German, Woodcut, ms
ca. 1596
Ein new Modelbuch..., title page (recto), Johann Schönsperger the Younger  German, Woodcut
October 22, 1524
Eyn new kunstlichboich, Titlepage (2 recto), Peter Quentel , Cologne German, Woodcut
Esemplario di lavori, title page, Nicolò Zoppino , Venice Italian, Woodcut (pages inlaid, modern vellum binding)
August 1529
Essempio di recammi, page 25 (recto), Giovanni Antonio Tagliente  Italian, Woodcut
Libro quarto. De rechami per elquale se impara in diuersi modi lordine e il modo de recamare...Opera noua, page 2 (verso), Alessandro Paganino  Italian, Woodcut
ca. 1532
Ensemble, unavailable, Russian
20th century
Ensemble, Giorgio di Sant'Angelo  American, (a) wool, cotton; (b,c) cotton; (d) cotton, wood, glass, American
Portrait of a Woman, Bernhard Strigel  German, Oil on linden
ca. 1510–15
Schön Neues Modelbuch (Page 13 recto), Johann Sibmacher  German, Etching
Livre de Moresques, page 9 (verso), Francesco di Pellegrino  Italian, Woodcut
Multiple artists/makers
Opera Nova Universali intitulata Corona di racammi, Giovanni Andrea Vavassore , Venice Italian, Woodcut
Showing 20 of 43