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Textiles - General

Textiles are flexible materials composed of a network of natural or artificial threads. A variety of techniques, including weaving, sewing, knitting, crocheting, plaiting, and looping, are used to arrange and hold the threads together.

Archaeological evidence suggests that textiles were produced as early as 34,000 B.C., although the earliest surviving example dates to c. 7,000 B.C. in the Tigris River region in Turkey. During the 15th century, wealthy merchants controlled the textile industry by purchasing raw wool, hiring specialists to turn the wool into cloth, and selling the cloth to dyers. However, contemporary textile makers have much more freedom and are able to purchase materials and weave and sell finished works to the public.

From ancient to modern times, textiles have been used to produce clothing, hats, quilts, embroidery, handkerchiefs, pillows, flags, and countless other items. Today, tourists visiting Africa and South Asia often buy intricately-detailed textiles as souvenirs, and fashion designers credit traditional weaving techniques and designs as their inspiration for fashion-forward couture. Because of their versatility, textiles continue to serve a variety of practical and decorative functions for cultures across the world.


Quick Facts

  • On February 11, 2014, Skinner Auctions sold a 19th-century Kashmir moon shawl produced in North India for $59,250
  • In the ancient world, textile trade occurred along the Silk Road, a winding route that extended from China to Italy
  • Discoveries in chemistry during the mid-19th century had a profound effect on the textile industry, resulting in the creation of manmade fibers and synthetic dyes

Recommended Items at Auction

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Three Pairs Silk Multi Colored Curtains with Flannel Lining
May 30, 10:00 AM EDT
Three Pairs Silk Multi Colored Curtains with Flannel Lining
by Nye & Company
Est: $50- $25,000
$1107 Bids
(9) Assorted Moving/ Furniture Blankets
Jun 01, 10:00 AM MST
(9) Assorted Moving/ Furniture Blankets
by EJ'S Auction & Appraisal
Est: $0- $0
$507 Bids
Hudson Bay Blanket
Jun 22, 6:30 PM EDT
Hudson Bay Blanket
by Gary R. Wallace Auctioneers Inc.
Est: $0- $0
$505 Bids
HAND STITCHED CIGAR SILKS
Jun 09, 10:30 AM EDT
HAND STITCHED CIGAR SILKS
by Farrin's country Auctions
Est: $0- $0
$604 Bids
Transitional Chief's Blanket
May 31, 12:00 PM EDT
Transitional Chief's Blanket
by Cottone Auctions
Est: $1,000- $1,500
$6004 Bids
A French Printed Cloth, Mulhouse, France, circa 1830
Jun 02, 2:00 PM AEST
A French Printed Cloth, Mulhouse, France, circa 1830
by Theodore Bruce Auctioneers & Valuers
Est: AUD70- AUD100
AUD803 Bids
COLLECTION OF PILLOWS
May 31, 10:00 AM CDT
COLLECTION OF PILLOWS
by Selkirk Auctioneers & Appraisers
Est: $100- $300
$1253 Bids
Linen cushion with Aboriginal motifs including duck feather insert (new): l. 50, w. 50 cm
Jun 05, 8:00 PM AEST
Linen cushion with Aboriginal motifs including duck feather insert (new): l. 50, w. 50 cm
by Lawsons
Est: AUD150- AUD250
AUD253 Bids
2 Pendleton Blankets Beaver State and a Pendleton Kleenex Box
May 30, 10:00 AM CDT
2 Pendleton Blankets Beaver State and a Pendleton Kleenex Box
by Cedarburg Auction & Appraisals LLC
Est: $200- $400
$302 Bids
T Marsteller American Eagle Coverlet Circa 1869
Jun 01, 9:00 AM EDT
T Marsteller American Eagle Coverlet Circa 1869
by Searchlight / Saucon Valley Auctions
Est: $100- $200
$352 Bids
Set of Croscill Floral Design Draperies
May 30, 10:00 AM EDT
Set of Croscill Floral Design Draperies
by Nye & Company
Est: $50- $25,000
$602 Bids
Large Red Wool Blanket
Jun 08, 9:00 AM CDT
Large Red Wool Blanket
by Matthew Bullock Auctioneers
Est: $30- $300
$152 Bids
LARGE TEXTILE GROUP OF TRADE BLANKETS AND CLOTHING
Jun 09, 10:00 AM EDT
LARGE TEXTILE GROUP OF TRADE BLANKETS AND CLOTHING
by Poulin Antiques & Auctions
Est: $200- $300
$1502 Bids
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
May 30, 7:00 PM AEST
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD302 Bids
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
May 30, 7:00 PM AEST
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD302 Bids
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
May 30, 7:00 PM AEST
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD302 Bids
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
May 30, 7:00 PM AEST
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD302 Bids
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
May 30, 7:00 PM AEST
12 x removalists stitched blankets, little use. Olive not included. Each 195 x 155cm
by Bargain Hunt Auctions
Est: AUD0- AUD0
AUD302 Bids
A Felted Brown Wool Wrap, Scalloped Edges
Jun 20, 11:00 AM AEST
A Felted Brown Wool Wrap, Scalloped Edges
by Theodore Bruce Auctioneers & Valuers
Est: AUD100- AUD200
AUD602 Bids
Nicholas Nourot RED SATIN HANDKERCHIEF VASE
Jun 16, 9:00 AM MST
Nicholas Nourot RED SATIN HANDKERCHIEF VASE
by R & R Auction INC
Est: $0- $0
$152 Bids
A European chain stitch cushion cover with gryphon and oriental design, 37 x 49 cm
May 30, 2:00 PM AEST
A European chain stitch cushion cover with gryphon and oriental design, 37 x 49 cm
by Lawsons
Est: AUD40- AUD60
AUD152 Bids
(4) Mainstays Chair Seat Cushions
Jun 01, 10:00 AM MST
(4) Mainstays Chair Seat Cushions
by EJ'S Auction & Appraisal
Est: $0- $0
$152 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Textiles - General


Nye & Company

Nye & Company

Bob Stutler's Auction

Bob Stutler's Auction

McCurley Auction Company

McCurley Auction Company

Material Culture

Material Culture