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Teasel handle

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Teasel handle MiP2227teashand

Mid 1800s

From a teasel-raising gig or gigmill. Teasels were set into wooden handles on this machine to raise the nap of the woven cloth after fulling. The cloth was wound around a system of rollers so that fresh surfaces could be drawn down and kept taut. The choice of teasels needed care. It was easy to ruin a cloth by using hard new teasel heads which would tear it. After 1800 a large number of patents were taken out for improved gigmills, many by inventors from the west. The price of teasels varied greatly and inspired many attempts to use iron wire instead. But since teasels and wire produce surfaces of a different nature, wire may have been unsuitable for Gloucestershire broadcloth.

Reproduced by kind permission of The Museum in the Park, Stroud.

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