Tweed

Harris Tweed woven in a herringbone twill pattern, mid-20th century

Tweed is a rough, woollen fabric, of a soft, open, flexible texture, resembling cheviot or homespun, but more closely woven. It is usually woven with a plain weave, twill or herringbone structure. Colour effects in the yarn may be obtained by mixing dyed wool before it is spun.[1]

Tweeds are an icon of traditional Scottish, Irish, Welsh and English clothing, being desirable for informal outerwear,[2] due to the material being moisture-resistant and durable. Tweeds are made to withstand harsh climates[3] and are commonly worn for outdoor activities such as shooting and hunting, in England, Wales, Ireland and Scotland. In Ireland, tweed manufacturing is now most associated with County Donegal but originally covered the whole country.[4] In Scotland, tweed manufacturing is most associated with the Isle of Harris in the Hebrides.

Etymology

Tweed making at the Leach family woollen mill at Mochdre, Powys, Wales, 1940

The original name of the cloth was tweel, Scots for twill, the material being woven in a twilled rather than a plain pattern. A traditional story has the name coming about almost by chance. Around 1831, a London merchant, James Locke, received a letter from a Hawick firm, Wm. Watson & Sons, Dangerfield Mills about some "tweels". The merchant misinterpreted the handwriting, understanding it to be a trade-name taken from the River Tweed that flows through the Scottish Borders textile area. The goods were subsequently advertised as Tweed and the name has remained since.[5]

Traditions and culture

Bike in Tweed, Stockholm 2013

Traditionally used for upper-class country clothing such as shooting jackets, tweed became popular among the Edwardian middle classes who associated it with the leisurely pursuits of the elite.[6] Due to their durability tweed Norfolk jackets and plus-fours were a popular choice[7] for hunters, cyclists, golfers and early motorists, hence Kenneth Grahame's depiction of Mr. Toad in a Harris Tweed suit.[8] Popular patterns include houndstooth,[9] associated with 1960s fashion, windowpane, gamekeeper's tweed worn by academics, Glen plaid check, originally commissioned by Edward VII, and herringbone.[10]

During the 2000s and 2010s, members of long-established British and American land-owning families started to wear high-quality heirloom tweed inherited from their grandparents, some of which pre-dated the Second World War.[11][12]

In modern times, cyclists may wear tweed when they ride vintage bicycles on a Tweed Run. This practice has its roots in the British young fogey and hipster subcultures of the late 2000s and early 2010s, whose adherents appreciate both vintage tweed, and bicycles.[13]

Musical instruments

Some vintage Danemann upright pianos have a tweed cloth backing to protect the internal mechanism. Occasionally, Scottish bagpipes were covered in tweed as an alternative to tartan wool.[14]

The term "tweed" is used to describe coverings on instrument cables and vintage or retro guitar amplifiers, such as the Fender tweed and Fender Tweed Deluxe.[15] Despite the common terminology, these coverings were cotton twill, and not actually tweed.

Types of tweed

  • Harris Tweed: A handwoven tweed, defined in the Harris Tweed Act 1993 as cloth that is "Handwoven by the islanders at their homes in the Outer Hebrides, finished in the Outer Hebrides, and made from pure virgin wool dyed and spun in the Outer Hebrides".[16]
  • Donegal tweed: A handwoven tweed which has been manufactured for several centuries in County Donegal, Ireland, using wool from locally-bred sheep and dye from indigenous plants such as blackberries, gorse (whins), and moss.
  • Silk tweed: A fabric made of raw silk with flecks of colour typical of woollen tweed.
  • Saxony tweed: Originated in Saxony, Germany. It is a fabric made from the wool of merino sheep. It is very smooth and soft.

Gallery

See also

  • 1920s in fashion
  • 1950s fashion
  • 1960s fashion
  • 1970s fashion
  • 2000s in fashion
  • 2010s in fashion
  • British Country Clothing
  • Norfolk jacket
  • Sports Jacket
  • Woollen industry in Wales

Notes

  1. ^ "Harris Tweed - The Cloth". The Harris Tweed Authority. Archived from the original on 15 August 2015. Retrieved 1 August 2015.
  2. ^ Fashion Institute of Technology (2006). ""The Tailor's Art" | Menswear Fabrics - A Glossary". The Museum at FIT. Archived from the original on 2 June 2007. Retrieved 24 November 2008.
  3. ^ "Tweed Jackets | A Closely Woven Thing". Cad & the Dandy. 20 November 2015. Retrieved 19 March 2019.
  4. ^ Corrigan, Vawn (2020). Irish Tweed: History, Tradition, Fashion. O'Brien Press. ISBN 9781788492010.
  5. ^ Kirkpatrick, Betty (2015). Treacle, Toast and Tweed ... English Word Origins for Language Lovers. Crombie Jardine Publishing Ltd. ISBN 978-1326384067.
  6. ^ Edward Minister and Son (August 1872). "The Norfolk Jacket". Gazette of Fashion, and Cutting-room Companion. Simpkin, Marshall & Co. 27 (316): 31.
  7. ^ Dutton, Edward (22 August 2014). "How to wear a tweed suit in the 21st century". A Suit That Fits. Retrieved 26 January 2016.
  8. ^ loopy_lucy14 (31 October 1997). "Mr. Toad's Wild Ride (1996)". IMDb. Retrieved 27 July 2011.
  9. ^ Dunbar, John Telfer (1984). The Costume of Scotland. London: Batsford.ISBN 0-7134-2534-2.
  10. ^ "The RL Style Guide | Glossary | Herringbone". Ralph Lauren. Archived from the original on 19 September 2008. Retrieved 24 November 2008.
  11. ^ "Nigel Cabourn DB Tweed Jacket - Rare Classic Quality?". Grey Fox. 5 September 2012. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
  12. ^ Bath, Richard (25 July 2009). "Richard Bath: In defence of tweed". The Scotsman. JPIMedia Ltd. Retrieved 17 October 2013.
  13. ^ "#TheChapMag Vintage Garments". The Chap Magazine. 11 September 2012. Retrieved 8 August 2013.
  14. ^ Price, Richard (16 March 2013). "Harris Tweed Bagpipe Covers". The Big Cloth and Me. Retrieved 8 August 2013.
  15. ^ Hunter, Dave (July 2012). "The Fender 5F4 Super Amp". Vintage Guitar. pp. 50–52.
  16. ^ "About Us - Guardians of the Orb". The Harris Tweed Authority. Archived from the original on 8 March 2013. Retrieved 1 August 2015.

References

External links

  • Media related to Tweed at Wikimedia Commons

Media files used on this page

Jute nahtlos.png
Author/Creator: SoylentGreen, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Hessian Fabric made seamless. It will serve to create a normal map in Blender.
Batik Indonesia.jpg
Author/Creator: MartijnL, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0 nl
Batik cloth purchased in Yogyakarta, Indonesia
MacLachlan hunting tartan (D. W. Stewart).svg
Author/Creator: , Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
A representation of the Maclachlan hunting tartan. This tartan is the oldest tartan to bear the name MacLachlan. This tartan is referred to as the Old MacLachlan, MacLachlan, and Hunting MacLachlan. This sett was first published in Old & Rare Scottish Tartans by D. W. Stewart in 1893.
Thread count: Y6, W4, Bk32, G32, Y6, W4, R48.
Sources: MacLachlan Clan Tartan WR1710 MacLachlan Hunting Tartan
Sherlock holmes pipe hat.jpg
Author/Creator: Alterego, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Sherlock holmes pipe hat
Tweed jacket edited.jpg
Author/Creator: devin rowe, Licence: CC BY 3.0
tweed jkt
Charlie Hunter - 1863.PNG
Scottish professional golfer Charlie Hunter (1836-1921) (left) at Prestwick in a match against Old Tom Morris in 1863. Both are wearing the traditional tweeds.
Herringbone.jpg
Author/Creator: Kaushik Gopal, Licence: CC BY 2.0
herringbone fabric
Tweed making at the Leach family woollen mill at Mochdre.jpg

Teitl Cymraeg/Welsh title: Cynhyrchu brethyn gwlan ym Melin Teulu Leach, Mochdre Ffotograffydd/Photographer: Geoff Charles (1909-2002) Nodyn/Note: Image shows worker weaving tweed at the loom at Montgomeryshire's last tweed mill. Dyddiad/Date: November 9, 1940 Cyfrwng/Medium: Negydd ffilm / Film negative Cyfeiriad/Reference: (gcc02446) Rhif cofnod / Record no.: 3472425

Rhagor o wybodaeth am gasgliad Geoff Charles yn Llyfrgell Genedlaethol Cymru

Ceir mwy o ffotograffau o Gymru a'r Gororau adeg yr Ail Ryfel Byd ar wefan geoffcharles.llgc.org.uk

More information about the Geoff Charles Collection at the National Library of Wales

More photographs of Wales and the English border during the Second World War can be found at geoffcharles.llgc.org.uk
Harris tweed.jpg
Harris tweed fabric
Glen plaid.jpg
Author/Creator: Kaushik Gopal, Licence: CC BY 2.0
glen plaid
Harris Tweed Nike.jpg
Author/Creator: Callicvol, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Harris Tweed used on Nike Dunk
Bike in Tweed Stockholm 2013.jpg
Author/Creator: Stefan Schäfer, Lich, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Bike in Tweed, Stockholm, 2013.
Hundtandsrutor.png
Author/Creator: The original uploader was Overengen at Swedish Wikipedia., Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Illustration: Magnus Överengen
Harris-Tweed 1.jpg
Author/Creator: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Ryj (originally uploaded by de:User:Momo, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Harris Tweed Orb Mark as label.
Man's silk and wool twill frock coat c. 1820.jpg
Man's frock coat, France, c. 1816-1820. Double-breasted, silk and wool twill with fabric-covered buttons. Shown with beaver fur top hat, Boston, Masschusetts. c. 1832