Bizarre silks were popular in Italy, France, and England at the end of the 17th century through the beginning of the 18th century. Antique bizarre silk textiles are easily identifiable with a strange asymmetrical design, bold colors, and lavish use of gold and silk threads. They are woven on a drawloom, with the motifs brocaded in supplementary weft or with floating pattern weft (lampas).
Their design was influenced by Asian textiles that reached Europe at that time. At first it featured mostly floral and other botanical elements. The design is not symmetrical and includes diagonal elements, with the flowers large and distorted and arranged along bulbous Baroque scrolls. Later bizarre elements included architectural elements, Chinese and Japanese motifs, as well as abstract and enigmatic shapes. The overlapping patterns, mixing fantasy with realistic motifs in witty juxtapositions developed into the complex and strange creations that were labeled as bizarre in the 20th century.