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Edsel & Eleanor Ford House tells the story of the home life of a prominent American family.

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An Historic Coat of Many Colors
Posted: July 12, 2010

Story of Historic, Yet Cutting Edge, Coat of Many Colors Revealed
At Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
Guest Lecturer Shares Journey of Creations of Celebrated Plimoth Jacket
 
 
It took nearly 300 volunteers three years to create a lavish coat of brilliant silk embroidery, handmade lace and sparkling sequins. Now, Dr. Patricia Wilson Nguyen, a member of the team that produced the jacket, comes to Edsel & Eleanor Ford House (Ford House) to share her work on this extraordinary textile adventure. The lecture, The Plimoth Jacket: A Paradise in Silk and Gold, explores the replication of a stunning 17th century English embroidered waistcoat and takes place on Aug. 26 at 7 p.m. in the Ford House Activities Center.
 
In 2006, Nguyen, an MIT-trained engineer specializing in historic needlework, was invited to participate in the recreation of a jacket worn in the 1600s by upper-class English women for the Plimoth Plantation, a living history museum in Plymouth, Mass. What ensued was a multi-year endeavor leading needlework devotees and history buffs who came from all over the world through the intricate project.
 
During her Ford House lecture, Nguyen will take the audience through the growth of the endeavor and how it came to include the labor of individuals as varied as 4th-grade boys and girls to men and women past their 70s, many of whom had never tried embroidery. She’ll also reveal the challenges associated with using centuries-old embroidery techniques few people knew and recreating materials that had been out of production for centuries.
 
For Ford House, the lecture continues the organization’s focus on design and inspiration and is the final program in the estate’s summer series on English Needlework Traditions.
 
Reservations are required and may be made by calling 313.884.4222. Admission to the lecture is $10 per person, $7 for members and $5 for students. For more information on the Plimoth Jacket, visit www.plimoth.org/embroideryblog.

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