WE CROSS THE LINE between painting and textiles

ALASTAIR MORTON
INSPIRATIONAL DIRECTOR
In his studio circa 1937

Our story – Born adventurous

Established as an experimental branch of Morton Sundour Fabrics in 1928, Edinburgh Weavers has always been synonymous with cutting-edge design and groundbreaking textile manufacturing.  

Our renowned Director for over 30 years from 1931 was Alastair Morton – the third generation in the Morton textiles dynasty. Inspired and tutored by his father and grandfather before him, Alastair boldly set out to fuse textiles and modern art.

Over 80 years later, that remains our aim, and the Mortons’ boldness and passion lives on.

 

Textiles as art

In his era, Alastair succeeded in fusing textiles and modern art because he combined the latest technical processes with brilliant creative minds. Illustrious British designers such as Barbara Hepworth, Terence Conran, Paul Nash and Ben Nicholson all created work for the company.

Daring to be different

Edinburgh Weavers consistently helped to shape new trends, rather than simply react to them.

With the launch of the Constructivist Fabrics in the 1930s for example, our material was at the forefront of the Industrial Art Movement. This was the first time we openly took named artists’ work and translated it into textiles. It meant Edinburgh Weavers acted as a kind of co-designer – a revolutionary and controversial new idea at that time.

Later in the 50s, our seminal textile hangings for the Festival of Britain, influenced the ‘contemporary’ colour palette, which was so enthusiastically embraced by the colour-starved post-war nation. 

 

Technical pioneers

Alastair Morton’s thirst for technological excellence as well as imaginative superiority, led to Edinburgh Weavers adopting – and even creating – many state-of-the-art techniques:

  • We were one of the first British companies to introduce the new process of screen-printing in 1932.
  • In 1945, we developed an entirely new way of approaching screen-printed textile design, making it possible to create a large variety of patterns quickly.
  • In 1950, we greatly speeded up production, by developing a new continuous dyeing process.

So that’s our story. Make us part of yours:

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