Colour Varieties - Flowers
Colour varieties exist in the majority of the silks in all three sizes. They are not uncommon - unlike the design varieties which are very rare.
Most of the varieties originally had more colours in the earlier cover types and it seems that cost dictated that these colours were reduced in the later weavings. As an example the Lavender was produced in two shades of mauve in the earlier weavings and was reduced to only one shade in the later weavings. Likewise the Love-in-a-Mist was reduced from two shades of blue to one. Other flowers had colours completely omitted in later weavings. The Dahlia was reduced from Red, Pink and Yellow to Red and Yellow. The Montbretia from Red, Orange and Yellow to Red and Yellow.
There are three flowers where it seems the designers were not happy with the original colour and completely changed the colours after a small first run. These are very rare. They are the Candytuft which was changed from White and Mauve to Pink and Lilac. The Honeysuckle which was changed three times before settling on it's final colour of Red and Yellow - Pink and Yellow (as Postcard), Pink and White, and Red and White. The Scabious which was changed from Red and Salmon to Mauve and Light Mauve. These are only found in the medium size and again in cover TYPE A. Curiously like one of the Honeysuckles, the colour scheme for the Candytuft was copied from the Postcard size. Were the Postcard sizes designed first?
In the checklist, descriptions of colours are purposely omitted which can be meaningless unless comparisons are made side by side.
For example, Pale Orange, Light Orange, Orange, Deep Orange, Dull Orange, Bright Orange, etc.. These types of colour variation do exist because quality control was unheard of and the critical use of the Pantone colour scheme as we know it today was not available. These minor colour variations can be, and are, seriously collected. If you do collect all of these then you can also collect the variations of green in the leaves and foliage; and these are many.
Colour Varieties - Borders
Each of the silks has a double line of thread top and bottom slightly inset from the jagged edge where they were cut from the roll. The silks were woven on rolls (hundreds at a time) and then cut. For this reason no 'unique' silk can exist. If a new variety is discovered, then surely several more must be found from the same roll.
The technical term for this cut is "pinking". The idea being to prevent fraying which would occur if they were cut straight, as with scissors. Many earlier silks issued by other brands were cut straight and fray quite easily. Early Ansties can be collected with a uniform width, but great differences in the height of the silk can occur, where thread has been lost by fraying. Kensitas overcame the fraying problem by pinking, weaving a double line of thread and placing the silks in the protective sleeve. In their issues of silk flags (surface printed) a year later, they used a cheaper system of straight cut and lightly glued edges.
The double line of thread is usually green. This colour is common to all the foliage of the flowers.
Unusually, and in the Medium size only, the following border thread colours have been taken from the flowers and not the foliage:-
7. Carnation - Red; 8. Chrysanthemum - Orange; 24. Iris - Mauve; 35. Nasturtium - Orange; 45. Poppy - Red
These flowers exist in the usual green as well as the above colours. Both types of border colours are not scarce although the green is much the harder to find.
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