Following the stylish lead of fellow Southerner George Washington, Southerners have been decorating their homes with the familiar floral fabric since at least 1759. Here, we trace the rise, fall, and resurgence of the South’s favorite fabric.
Photo: Courtesy Mount Vernon
Reflecting colonial America’s fondness for printed cottons, founding father and arbiter of taste George Washington purchased a set of chintz-upholstered bedroom furniture for his Virginia estate, Mount Vernon. According to the sales invoice, the English-made furniture was covered in “Chintz Blew plate Cotton,” which was a blue-and-white printed chintz.