Lyon articles index

In early January 2016, I spent a few days in Lyon to explore the textile history of the town. That was prompted by visiting the silk museum in Stockholm, where I learned that Swedes had stolen all the mechanical secrets from Lyon!

Everything I heard and saw will not fit in a single reasonable write-up, so I'll be dividing it up. Here's a preliminary plan that will turn into an index, of course highly subject to change as I write the parts!

  • History and social context
    • Why silk in Lyon?: On the beginnings of the Fabrique, from François the First to the Roi Soleil, up to the French Revolution.
    • La Croix-Rousse: Recentish story of the neighborhood which was basically a weaving factory in the 19th century.
    • What was a canut?: Won't be the first nor the best explanation of it, but maybe a start for the curious!
    • What was a soyeux?: The 1% of the days.
    • The various revolts: And why the left-wing picking up slogans without digging is problematic.
    • The modern crisis and what and who is left: Or "I was lucky to meet a daughter of a canut whose father gave up only in 1980".
    • Processing my thoughts on how this relates to my field :): Expect Silicon Valley bashing, a criticism of the modern left-wing and anti-capitalism.
  • Technique
    • Weaving 101: 'Cause we can't talk advanced fun without the basics.
    • From "lacs" to the Jacquard in Lyon: From pulling ropes and exhausting work to a machine making the job disappear.
    • Some velvets and how they're made: Because I hate velvet with a passion but fell in love with how it's made.
    • Those huge ribbon looms from Switzerland They look awe-inspiring and the way they work is really interesting!
    • "Chiné" or the French take on ikkat: How to make complex patterns on a plain weave.
    • Brocatelles, "pockets" and a few ways to add 3D
  • Art
    • From ripping off the Italians to "the French taste": Tied into the early days is how patterns developed.
    • Woven portraits: Amazingly expensive and impressive technical achievements.
    • Why you shouldn't use your flash when taking pictures: Reflection on pigments, the current aspect of old textiles versus re-weaves, and how things might have looked in the past.