Research has recently confirmed this altar cloth as having been created from a dress belonging to Elizabeth I, making it the only known surviving piece of her clothing. Even better, this gown was also immortalized in the Rainbow portrait of Elizabeth.
In its long history, the gown was given to Blanche Perry, one of Elizabeth's favorite ladies. Blanche, in turn, had ties to Bacton, and at some point the dress (or fabric from it) was given to the local church where it was transformed into an altar cloth, which was used for many years, and eventually rediscovered and hung on the church wall.
Several of my own photos are posted below. But there is LOTS of interesting info on youtube with many great professional photos, and focusing on such topics as the discovery of the cloth, the research process establishing the cloth's provenance, the portrait in which the original dress appears, and even a project that recreated the dress.
Here are what I think are the best links:
Below is a sampling of my own photos. As often true in museum settings, you could only get so close. . . and VERY frustratingly, it was impossible to see the small details including exactly how the stitching was done. I spent about a half hour viewing the cloth and chatting with two other ladies I met there (both obviously stitchers as well).
Although from about a foot away, the stitching seems to have a lot of dimension and texture similar to various detached buttonhole stitches, large scale sample of two motifs displayed with the cloth indicates most of that dimension was created with many, many, many tiny straight stitches.
It was a wonderful treat to see this rare survival in person. Perhaps there are other unrecognized pieces of historic costume still out there to be discovered. And hopefully by the time they're found and ready to be displayed, we'll all be able to jump on airplanes again and go see them ourselves.