Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Not a Standard Tabard!..

Heralds Tabard (Child size)

We've just completed a tiny order for Kensington Palace in London. I say a tiny order because it was only 15" across and made for a six/seven year old, though it certainly took some time to complete.
When I first saw the photos of the original, I thought it was a bit odd and the lions on it were not the sleek lion/leopard beasts that you're used to seeing on Royal Standards and Tabards, but more like 'pug dogs' with a mane! The Irish harp was also very different to the normal interpretation. Never the less, we were requested to copy the original and we did - after requesting 'flat' photos to take away perspective issues.
Then there were the scaling problems to overcome. Getting a Lion Rampant to fit in a 3" space and still look like same and NOT like a red blob is not an easy task.
It was completed with a mixed technique of applique and embroidery on to quartered silk panels and took over a quarter of a million stitches. Someone in the office said that one of the panels should be bright red. "Why?" we asked innocently. "Because it has a quarter of vermillion stitches"! Groans - and a quick exit!
Anyway click on the picture to see more photos.

When was the original made? Well, it's not that clear. Gini has suggested about 1900, due to the sewing techniques. What was it for? They didn't have educational 'try-on' then. Perhaps Royal children played 'Heralds and Pursuivants' instead of 'Cowboys and Indians'?