|Description: A silk jacket with very wide sleeves, edged with a band of cream coloured silk, with the back of the sleeve band embroidered with figures and landscapes reflecting the "Willow Pattern" story. The front of the jacket overlaps. The front, neck, and lower edges of the jacket are edged with two braids, with a pale blue background and colourful Chinese symbols and geometrical designs. A narrow black silk binding finishes off all the edges except the sleeves. The jacket has five loop fasteners with opaque glass toggles for the middle of the jacket. The top loops have no toggles and the bottom fastener has metal cuff links. The lining is pale blue fine silk. Much of the jacket appears to be sewn by machine.
Barbara recalled that the jacket was used for plays and dressing up. It could have been brought back from Asia by Percy Sutherland, a cousin of Mary Harris. Percy Sutherland was the youngest son of John Newton Sutherland. He owned an exporting business and often sent gifts to the Harris family. Percy was a collector of Chinese Art and donated his collection to the McGill University Gallery.
Items donated by Barbara Sayers Larson. Barbara Larson is the daughter of Annie Harris (1882-1986) and Beverly Sayers (1882-1976) and granddaughter of Arthur (1843-1932) and Mary (1859-1954) Harris. Barbara was born January 27, 1920 and was the youngest of three children. Barbara and her siblings, Geoffrey Sayers (1907-1997) and Dora Sayers Caro (1915-2004) donated Benares to the Ontario Heritage Foundation in 1969 after inheriting it from their aunt, Naomi Harris (1883-1968). Many of the items donated by Barbara originally belonged to her mother or Aunt Naomi and came from Benares. Barbara lived in a log cabin originally given to her by her grandparents at 1723 Birchwood Drive. She still maintains a close tie with Benares and is now living in Kelowna, British Columbia, with her daughter.