I was allowed to draw these items in the archive room at the castle but I could only use pencil. I used hard and soft pencils to change my range of marks. I took lots of photos so when I got home I could do a few more drawings with a range of media, including pen and ink, pastel and paint and drawing pens.
I made detailed notes on my drawings and I also wrote some notes/descriptions of each item. I was allowed to turn the items over myself if I wore the gloves so I did sort of get to feel the items, albeit through cotton gloves. For the Blue Dress (drawings above and below, wordpress won’t let me rotate the top photo today for some reason!) I wrote; The velvet is soft and plush, the nap is brushed in different directions which gives it different tones, the fold lines where it has been stored are very visible and have marked the velvet, the weight of the cotton (twill?) fabric is very heavy, the lace is stiff and yellowed with age but delicate, I can see some of the stitches, the dress is full and looks stiff.
Pencil drawings and 2 pen and ink drawings, one slow and detailed, one done quickly capturing the folds in the hem.
Waistcoat; watered silk, shiny almost holographic, complex embroidery, stem stitch, exquisite and so detailed, very precise and tiny, I think it is silk treads as the embroidery gleams,one of the button holes is frayed, the hand stitches are a lot more prominent on the back, not as carefully sewn (I wonder if this is because the man would have had a jacket on so the back would not be seen?). The ribbon tapes are wafer thin, delicate and aged, look very fragile. The front of the waistcoat looks quite sturdy but the back is very thin and fragile. There are signs of wear on the collar and lots of creases on the back. There is some fraying of the back seam that runs up the middle back of the waistcoat. Again the fold lines are very prominent where it has been stored for so long.
Pencil drawings, pastel experiment for the watered silk, watercolour experiment for the watered silk and a fan paintbrush and indian ink to capture the watered silk.
Black lace veil; Textured, fragile, delicate, patterned, so fine reminded me of cobwebs. Drape and fold to it, repeating pattern, the net has a honeycomb pattern and is quite structured. Light, airy and flowing. Turned over hem at the top is a little twisted, scallop type edges on the 2 sides and bottom. Again, fold lines very prominent.
Pencil drawings, bubble wrap dipped in ink, fan brush and pen and ink and fan brush and indian ink.