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Man's suit coat

ca. 1780
Origin: England
Coat Length 42", shoulder width 14".
Printed cotton velvet, buttons with sequins and silver, silk, cotton-linen and linen linings. Wool and coarse linen(bast) padding.
Museum Purchase
Acc. No. 1985-145,1
Man's suit coat made of pink and black on beige printed cotton velvet ("velveret") in a small scale zig-zag and dash pattern forming vertical strips. Narrow neck band 7/8" wide; cut away front opening with 11 silver gilt and sequin buttons with functional buttonholes. Sleeves curve over elbows, ending in 4 1/2" cuffs, each trimmed with 3 buttons. Two deep linen pockets with shaped pocket flaps and 3 buttons trimming each (one button missing). Button-trimmed side pleats and a center back vent to waist. Original lining consists of cream silk satin (now very fragile). Linen inner lining at center fronts, vent edges at back, cuffs, and pocket flaps. Tow linen and wool batting attached beneath lining above the center back vent and center front chest. Tabby linen sleeve linings. The silk lining has a pleat covering part of the buttonholes. Two eyelets at top back of left shoulder (purpose unknown).
Label:Suit Coat, with matching Waistcoat and Breeches
Britain, ca. 1780
Block-printed cotton velvet, or velveret, trimmed with sequins and metallic threads, lined with silk, linen-cotton, and linen, interlined with wool and linen
1985-145, 1-3
Cotton velvet, also called velveret, became fashionable for men's suits in the 1780s. In this example, a design of small-scale wavy lines is block printed on the cotton velvet. Suits usually had decorative buttons in several different sizes. Large buttons fastened and trimmed the coat, while smaller buttons fastened the breeches knees and waistcoat front. These buttons are trimmed with silver gilt, tinsel, and sequins.