The Phoenix Cope from Watts and Co. of London

For more than a century, Watts & Co. of London have been known for their work within the context of the gothic revival. This is perfectly natural given that its founders include some of the premiere gothic revivalists of their time. 

Continuing on within this tradition, they recently announced the release of their Phoenix cope which they describe accordingly:

The main body of this cope is made in our popular 'Stag' cloth of gold, with the hood and orphreys in our Red Comper Cathedral silk damask. The cope hood features one of our latest designs - a unique and stunning Phoenix embroidery.⁠ The mythical Phoenix, consumed by fire and rising from the ashes to new life, was adopted as a symbol of Christ’s resurrection from the very first centuries of Christianity. And, in these difficult times, we feel the impact of this powerful symbol and its message of hope.⁠
The cope itself comes, as one might expect from Watts, within the English tradition, and while it has various merits it is the hood (or shield) which is the star of this particular show.

Consonant with the gothic revival tradition, a multi-coloured, tasseled fringe lines the hood, adding an extra layer of colour and texture to the vestment. 

With regards to the phoenix design itself, readers will take note of the very nice detailing and textures found herein:

A look at the front and back of the cope seen in its full length:

The front of the cope includes red orphrey panels, including where the cope attaches -- which is consistent with both the Roman and medieval English traditions -- and to my mind, the most elegant form (one which also happens to be the sturdiest and longest lasting). Some very subtle gold detailing is found along the edges of these panels:

All said, it is yet another elegant piece of work that further adds to the impressive historical portfolio of Watts & Co. of London. 

They note that other "matching vestments may also be made to compliment the Phoenix cope" and for those gothic revival enthusiasts amongst our readership, this may well be something you may wish to inquire about as this particular approach certainly meets our "variety and distinctiveness" criteria, moving beyond the mass-produced gothic models of the twentieth century and into the realm of true liturgical art.

For more information, visit Watts' website or find them on social media

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