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L for Lace

Published on , by Marielle Brie de Lagerac

Lace is an intricate, openwork fabric without weft or warp featuring a wide range of techniques and motifs. Linen, cotton, silk, gold and silver thread are used to make this luxurious product, which is all the more amazing considering how complex the process is.

Alençon, third quarter of the 19th century, needlepoint lace wedding veil, 360 x... L for Lace

Alençon, third quarter of the 19th century, needlepoint lace wedding veil, 360 x 205 cm (141.73 x 80.07 in). Paris, Drouot, October 24, 2018, Coutau-Bégarie auction house, Ms. Vuille, preempted for The Musée des Beaux-Arts et de la Dentelle in Alençon.
Result: €82,940

Perhaps because of its delicacy or the unobtrusive nature of its skill, lace is the great overlooked achievement of the Italian Renaissance . Evolving from embroidery, Venetian needle lace, which historians concur originated in the 16 th century, was a sumptuous novelty that quickly charmed the courts of Europe. The arabesques, flowered scrolls and shadow and light effects of white lace are almost sculptural, setting the exceptional apart from the ordinary. While Louis XIV’s sculptors had enormous artistic respect for these refined details, it was not exactly the same for Jean-Baptiste Colbert, whose provisions concerning Venetian lace were based on a desire for competition rather than a taste for beautiful attire. In the 1660s he had around thirty Italian lace-makers brought to France with the aim of putting them to work…
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