The lovely Kimiko commented on the first post that she has seen the Eleonora gown done twice before, and photographed once at Costume College. If anyone has pictures of the outfit I would love to see them! She also had seen similar fabric in the garment district several years ago in LA.
While at Costume College in 2009 I took a class from Cilean on Renaissance fabrics and I believe she had a piece of this fabric. It was heavier in weight and had similar properties, but was not identical. It was, however, the closest I have seen out there.
I also found a portrait on Lis Kester’s site that looks suspiciously similar to the Eleonora fabric:
It is a portrait of Isabel of Austria, painted in 1573. In looking for more info on this portrait I found Anea’s excellent commentary on the fabric on her site. She has many pictures of variations of this pattern and great research on various theories about the use of “arabesque” patterned fabrics.
All of this information reinforces to me the fact that punch needlework is likely to give me the closest approximation of texture and will make the design as close as possible to the pattern in the portraits.