Valance made by Isabella Murray (daughter-in-law of Sir Henry Parkes)

Made by Murray, Isabella in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, 1885-1895.

This valance relates directly to the family of Sir Henry Parkes, a former premier of New South Wales and one of the founding fathers of the Australian constitution. It was made by his daughter-in-law, Isabella, who in 1884 married Varney Parkes. The previous year Isabella had accompanied Sir Henry on his tour of America and Europe after the marriage of her sister Mary to Varney. Whilst they were overseas Mary died suddenly. Isabella and Varney had five children,
of whom three survived (Mary, Mu...


Valance, mantle drape, embroidered silk, made by Isabella Murray (daughter-in-law of Sir Henry Parkes), Australia, 1885-1895

Mantle drape in black satin cut into a symmetrical design of a central panel with a smaller panel on either side. The central panel is embroidered with a large branch of wattle blossoms and leaves and smaller branches on the smaller panels. From the central point at the base of each section hangs a gold tassel in chenille. The valance is edged in gold rope braid.


425 mm
530 mm
30 mm


Hand embroidered satin depicting a design based on sprays of wattle. The flowers consist of small pom poms made from 10mm diameter wool. Wool embroidery yarn is used for the stems and silk chenille for the leaves. The tassels are also made from silk chenille.

Valances like these were used to decorate shelves, brackets and music stands.
Murray, Isabella 1885-1895


Gift of Mrs Jane Gray, 1985
20 June, 1985

Cite this Object

Valance made by Isabella Murray (daughter-in-law of Sir Henry Parkes) 2017, Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, accessed 22 August 2017, <>
{{cite web |url= |title=Valance made by Isabella Murray (daughter-in-law of Sir Henry Parkes) |author=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences |access-date=22 August 2017 |publisher=Museum of Applied Arts & Sciences, Australia}}
This object is currently on display in Store 5 at the Museums Discovery Centre.
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