• Vintage Las Vegas Cloth in 10 colors

    vintage-las-vegas-cloth-caprice-waverly-willow-460

    Following up on my post about vintage rhino cloth, here is my little stash of vintage Waverly “Las Vegas cloth” from the same estate sale time capsule. This pattern — called “Caprice” — is quite “interesting” — there are atomic subparticles mixed with… maple leaves? The colors include mocha, mauvedust, sandalwood and seafoam. Sublime, each and every one.

    The fabric that I found was a bound, half-yard “Purchased Length” sold by Waverly, with 10 small 4″ x 6″ samples sewnalong one end. I guess the idea was that with the larger piece, the homemaker had enough fabric to see and feel the overall pattern and drape, but she also had the 10 color options right there to take home and decide.

    The key difference between the rhino cloth and the Las Vegas cloth is:  texture. The rhino cloth is 100% cotton, tightly woven, with those little rhino bumps — so it has a much stiffer feel. The Las Vegas cloth is made from 69% rayon, 22% cotton and 5% Lurex (gold thread, I believe) and because of that rayon content, has a much softer “hand” or feel — although still a durable weave. It is most certainly for (fully lined) draperies, not for upholstery.

    When you get down to the complete gallery, you can click twice on the images to see them quite large (use the back button to return to the post). You also will see the gorgeous golden Lurex metallic thread running through the fabric. I am guessing that the fabric is called “Las Vegas coth” because of the intensity of these gold threads. The fabric really is quite glitzy and glamorous, and made into pinch pleat draperies really would set a Rat Pack scene.

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    Comments

    1. Mmmm, Pam, no – I think that would have just been a sample swatch for decorating shops and vendors of decorator fabrics. The mills still do this today. One nice hunk of fabric to get the idea of the overall pattern, then small swatches that show all the colorways.

      It’s a treasure, now matter how you look at it.

      • Maria, thank you for that clarification. What you describe as the purpose of this swatch makes total sense as the estate sale was in a town where fabric mills produced this fabric.

    2. MidCent Keith says:

      What a great mix of motifs .. grape and elm leaves mixed twith atomic graphics – I always look for great old fabric at estate sales (future throw pillows?). Crate and Barrel has some really great “retro” fabrics and I noticed that their content was high in rayon too – same as your vintage cloth .. I found that interesting.

    3. And MidCent Keith – thanks for the clarification re the “grape and elm” leaves. I am not very good at tree-leaf identification, as you can tell.

    4. There’s a place not too far from me in Pennsauken, NJ that still carries a large variety of Barklothes, just really expect to pay out the nose though. They also carry the full line of Knoll fabric, which can be up to $100/yard for the upholstery stuff.

    5. Palm Springs Stephan says:

      I’m liking that swatch in the main photo. And I’m getting a little desperate for drapery fabric for my living room. I let some absolutely perfect drapes get away from me in an eBay auction some months back (see “Related Post #4″ above), and I’ve been kicking myself ever since. Does anyone have any idea where I can actually buy either fabric in quantity? A wholesaler or retailer who actually has it in stock? I’ve looked for months with no success.

    6. HI Palm Springs Stephan, how many yards do you need. I am going to make a sacrifice to the retro decorating gods (and be on the lookout) in order to find you some!

    7. Holy Cow! Now that’s the pattern for me!!! That’s neat that they call it Las Vegas cloth. I’ll take it in turquoise, ice pink and the white and mauve please! ;O)
      That would make the most awesome set of pinch pleats, oh my.

      I have actually seen that quite a bit, the “atomic” pattern mixed with a leaf pattern in the barkcloth style fabrics. I like it very much.

      Boy don’t you wish we could order all these old fabrics, sigh. Some of the reproduction barkcloth fabrics are pretty good, I love my tonic living atomic fabric, but there was something special about those old patterns that is very hard to reproduce.

      And thanks for finding these and telling us about what the old fabrics were called, very cool.

    8. Palm Springs Stephan says:

      Pam, I need MASSIVE amounts! I have not had a drapery maker measure, but there are two windows: one is 10 feet long, the other 8 feet long. Imagine 18 horizontal feet of pinch-pleated drapes! But they will be short … curtain-like … lest they cover the wall unit air conditioner. Maybe 62 inches long? Don’t know what that works out to in yardage, but I bet we’re talking several dozens of yards.

      • pam kueber says:

        Hi Palm Springs Stephan, I used to be good at math so I gave this one a try. I calculate you need approx. 27 yards. Here’s how I got there:

        1 — 18′ width times 3 — to allow for pleats, stack back and turn. Equals 54 linear feet (width) of material.
        2 — 6′ of material height required per panel to accommodate top and bottom hems and get to 62″ overall height.
        3 — multiply 54 x 6 to get to 324 s.f. overall required.
        4 — most upholstery/drapery fabric is 54″ (close to 4′) so divide yardage by that number. = 81 feet
        5 — divide by 3 (feet to yards) and you get to final requirement of 27 s.f.

        The one other thing this does not account for is potential “repeat” requirement. If the fabric is a medium- to large-sized print, even more fabric would be required.

        In addition, my initial assumption that you need three-times the width may be too high. Gavin says it’s just two. Needs to be checked.

        Would love to hear others check my math. I did this from memory of past reading. Ummm, can’t find my booklet.

        • Pam, a typo? You said:

          “5 — divide by 3 (feet to yards) and you get to final requirement of 27 s.f.”

          No, you mean 27 YARDS of fabric. Not square feet, not square yards, just 27 yards of 54″ wide fabric.

          Right? :) Very nice of you to show your math!

    9. Palm Springs Stephan says:

      I knew it would be a lot. All that pleating increases the required width … it’s certainly not as simple as measuring the window. The only thing I can see that may have been left out is what I call “overhang” … whatever distance I may choose to have the drapes extend beyond the sides of the window. I’m guessing about 6-8 inches each side, which would add a maximum of 16 inches per window width. But in the end, I expected it to end up being about 30 yards.

    10. Pam, I have a collection of bolts of 40′s drapery cloth. How do I find out their value and how do I sell them? Best, L

      • pam kueber says:

        Lynn, we do not do valuations on the blog. You can post these for sale on the forum is you like: http://retrorenovation.com. That said, I think if I were you (and I have a large collection of wallpaper, similar situation) and wanted to sell, I’d put the stuff on ebay. Probably with a set minimum….Send me pics, I’d LOVE to see! email: retrorenovation [at] gmail.com … Good luck

    11. I LOVE the red cats – this fabric would look great on my fold out bed for my 1968 Silver Streak vintage travel trailer!

    12. Linda Haas says:

      Love this! Similar to some I found at my fav store here in St. Louis, The Future Antique store! I didn’t realize there were different kinds. I always refer to it as Barkcloth. I made a shower curtain and will be redoing the former ‘kid’s’ bathroom this week!

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