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LACE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM


ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 2 LACE - DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION Introduction When I came to the Museum in 1983 most of

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Document on Subject : "LACE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM"— Transcript:

1 LACE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM ꤠRose
LACE CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 2 LACE - DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION Introduction When I came to the Museum in 1983 most of the lace collection had no documentation bey ond its original brief entry in the stock books. Because there had been so little work done on the lace it seemed an ideal opportunity to give serious thought to its exact nature and provide not only a definition but also a theoretical framework for its do cumentation in the form of a classification system.This seemed both possible and desirable given the discrete nature of the lace collection and the complex and varied techniques it encompassed. Furthermore, a theoretical framework would both simplify and c larify the documentation process. In the museum context a classification system is essentially a

2 tool for understanding a particular su
tool for understanding a particular subject or collecting area. A definition of that subject is needed before decisions can be made about how to classify the objects within it. Everyone thinks they know what lace is, but describing it unambiguously is not so easy. Those who make lace assume that any fabric produced using a lacemaking technique is automatically lace, but such techniques are used in many interes ting contemporary textiles that are too dense to be called lace. On the other hand, those who are not makers invariably have a very fixed idea of lace based on its traditional forms, regardless of the way it is made. The definition of lace as a decorativ e openwork fabric in which the pattern of spaces is as important as the solid areas 1 is not only appropriate for historic and traditional lace, but also takes into account current and future developments in technique and expression. It was written from the point of view of a mak

3 er of lace as well as a lace historian,
er of lace as well as a lace historian, with the expectation that lacemaking will continue to evolve, possibly beyond any techniques we might currently conceive of. Technique 2 was chosen as the primary characteristic of lace for this classification system because the documentation was likely to be of most interest to textile practitioners, students and collectors, and technique would be their most useful starting point. Another reason for selecting technique is that some properties of lace date, style, origin - are debatable, whereas recording what one can see of its structure and other physical properties is not. In fact, quite often it is only possible to make the other decisions after the technical notes are completed. Angharad R ixonÕs 3 recent SEM analysis of fibres in a group of seventeenth century lace was a timely reminder not to speculate or take anything for granted when modern scientific techniques might provide answers.

4 A further advantage of the technique -
A further advantage of the technique - based approach i s that it makes possible comparison with other textile processes, which in turn enables a better appreciation of their development. For example, the square mesh of early lacis is closely related to the 1 One acknowledges that lace would not have reached such sophisticated perfection if the simple techniques from which it developed at the end of the fifteenth century had not been applied to fashio nable dress. However, adding to the definition to reflect this would be limiting, both for collection development and for any discussion about the nature of lace. 2 Technique as it is used here generally reflects both the means of production and the result ing structures. This places this lace classification system between the general textile systems of Irene Emery ⠀ The Primary Structures of Fabrics , Textile Museum, Washington 1980 ) and Annem

5 arie Seiler - Baldinger ⠀ Textiles: a
arie Seiler - Baldinger ⠀ Textiles: a Classification of Techniques, Sm ithsonian Institution, 1994 3 Rixon, Angharad: A fault in the thread? North American Textile Conservation Conference, Conference Preprints, Philadelphia, 2002 ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 3 knotting of fishing nets, and the looping process in n eedle lace was, and still is, used for making carry bags and hunting nets in many different cultures. Within each of the major technical groupings the laces are classified according to regional style, and arranged chronologically within that classification so that development of style and techniques is clearly visible. (This is a different approach from that usually employed where the whole spectrum of laces is examined across a particular period in time.) Then within that framework normal cataloguing conve ntions apply. Extensive cross - referencing is possible, and a set of indexing terms is

6 attached to each individual record, so
attached to each individual record, so that, for example, nineteenth century Belgian laces of all techniques can be called up for display or study. An important charact eristic of this classification system is its inclusiveness. One often reads that the only "real" laces are bobbin lace and needle lace. From the 16th to the 18th centuries, when the wearing of lace was an essential part of fashionable dress, this was prob ably true, in the sense that those particular laces were the most sought after and the most expensive. Today most lace historians take a more liberal view and include in the subject other openwork fabrics such as crochet, knotting and knitting, as well as certain embroideries and weavings, whether hand or machine made. The following pages contain an illustrated outline of the classification system. The basic structure has changed little since 1983, but there have been some refinements during the interve ning years.

7 Rosemary Shepherd Powerhouse
Rosemary Shepherd Powerhouse Museum 1983, 2003 ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 4 I. EMBROIDERED LACES Embroidered laces are based on a woven fabric or other fabric construction. They first developed during the fifteenth century. 1. Cutwork Holes cut in the fabric are the basis of the design; these may or may not be embellished with bars or other decoration depending on their size or the style of lace. These began in the 15th century as small areas of open relief to surface embroidery, becoming more sophistic ated with the passage of time. For example, some forms of 푲攀ticellaÕ*, hedebo, hardanger, richelieu, and broderie Anglaise. H3776: geometric cutwork ⠀퐀reticella픀⤀ H333a:19thC Danish Hedebo cutwork * The term Ôreticella픠椀s nowadays reserved for those geometric needle laces that are worked on a grid of plaited or laid threads. Previous

8 ly the term also included the geometric
ly the term also included the geometric embroidered laces, which were worked on a fabric grid; these are now thought of as cutwork, even though in many instances th ey may look like the true reticella. A third form of Ôreticella픠  - free needle lace motifs within a (larger) square grid is more correctly termed Ôpunto in ariaÕ or sometimes Ôgeometric needle laceÕ. The developmental progression was probably from cut work to reticella to punto in aria. ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 5 2. Pulled fabric and drawn thread work 1) In pulled fabric work the threads of the (loosely woven) base fabric are left intact, but re - arranged by working various decorative stitches tightly over groups of threads t o form openwork patterns; for example, Dresden work and other muslin embroideries. Some such laces are a combination of drawn and pulled work in that some of the base fabric threads have been removed

9 and those remaining have been decorated
and those remaining have been decorated with pulled wor k stitches; for example, some pina cloth (pineapple fibre) embroideries from the Phillipines. H5111 - 6:18thC muslin pulled fabric embroidery 133a: 19thC pina cloth pulled work 2) In drawn thread work some threads of the base fabr ic are removed and the remaining threads re - arranged or decorated with stitchery; for example, punto tirato, Mexican drawn work. A8960:17thC punto tirato H5528 - 2: 19 th C drawn thread embroidery Mexican d rawnwork ⠀Earnshaw 4 p.111 4 Earnshaw, Pat, Needle - made laces, Collins Australia, 1988 ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 6 3. Embroidered nets 1) Embroidered handmade nets: a. filet or lacis - the pattern is darned into a knotted square or diamond mesh, either within the m

10 esh or around it. A9148 - 7: 17thC
esh or around it. A9148 - 7: 17thC lacis darned around the mesh bars 20thC lacis darned within the mesh bars b. buratto - the pattern is darned into a woven square meshed (leno weave) fabric A9148 8/1:17thC buratto, enlarged at left to show the woven intersections of the mesh c. miscellaneous other embroidered h and made nets. 2) Embroidered machine made nets: a. needle run and/or tamboured; for example, Limerick lace. H3693: early 20thC Limerick embroidered net b. muslin appli煵踀; for example, Carrickmacross applique. (Carrickmacross guipure is r eally a form of cutwork.) H3692: early 20thC Carrickmacross muslin applique c. machine made braids (or motifs) hand appli煵踀d to machine made net: for example, "tape" Honiton, Brussels "princess". These are probably borderline inclusions in the embroidered lace section, were it not for the fact that there is often some

11 additional embroidery of the net as part
additional embroidery of the net as part of the design and a not inconsiderable amount of other handwork is involved in the attachment of the tape motifs to the net. A6475 : 20thC 푴ape픠Honiton or 푰rincess픠lace ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 8 II. NEEDLE - MADE LACES Needle - made laces are made entirely free of a base fabric. They developed at the end of the sixteenth century from techniques used in the embroidered laces, particularly cutwork and drawn work. 1. Buttonholed needle laces These are the largest single group of needle laces and include punto in aria, Venetian gros point, Venetian flat point, point de France, Alencon, Argentan, hollie point, etc. A9148 - 4: 17thC Venetian gros poi nt H5111 - 80: !7thC Venetian flat point 85/1046 - 1:18thC French Alencon needle lace H6625 - 1: 18thC English Hollie point H3627: la

12 te 19thC Belgian point de gaze ꤠRose
te 19thC Belgian point de gaze ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 9 Needle - made laces continued 2. Needle woven lace s That is, laces woven over a basis of stretched radiating threads; for example, Teneriffe and other "sol" laces (probably a development of the early Spanish drawn work). Some knotting of threads occurs in these laces but the designs are mostly created wi th a darning stitch. 19thC Spanish needle woven network: Bath, p 92 5 20thC 퐀sol픀 lace from Argentina ⠀Bath p 95) 3. Knotted needle laces; for example, punto a groppo, bebilla, Arme nian, etc. These can be very simple, or extremely elaborate, even three - dimensional, and there is some regional variation in the structure of the knot. Because of their structure these laces were originally grouped with the Knotted Laces 86/115 - 4: ear ly 20thC k

13 notted needle lace made in Cyprus
notted needle lace made in Cyprus 4. Needle laces with mixed techniques; for example Halas (Hungarian) lace in which the solid areas of the design are needle woven, as in simple darning, and the fillings buttonholed. Other combinations ar e also possible. 5 Bath, Virginia Churchill, Lace, R egnery, Chicago, 1974 ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 10 III. BOBBIN LACES Bobbin lace is woven over a pattern on a firm pillow, with threads wound on bobbins. It developed at the end of the fifteenth century, probably from one of the braid - making techniques of the time. 1. Continuous or "s traight" bobbin lace in which pattern and background are worked together. 1) Plaited and guipure laces; for example, the early Ôpattern bookÕ laces and their derivatives, Le Puy, Bedfordshire, Cluny, Maltese. H3771: 16 th C bobbin lace

14
86/764 - 1: 19thC Bedfordshire bobbin lace H3676: 19thC Cluny style bobbin lace H3702: 19thC Maltese bobbin lace 20thC Cluny lace ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 11 2) Bobbin laces with a mesh ground; for example, Valencie nnes, Binche, Mechlin, Lille, Buckinghamshire point, torchon. A1316 - 2: Early 18thC Valenciennes H5111 - 54: later 18thC Valenciennes A9148 - 20: 18thC Mechlin H9067: 20thC torcho n H4205:19thC Buckinghamshire Point ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 12 Bobbin laces continued 2. Sectional or part lace 1) Motifs are made separately and joined later, with mesh or bars; for example, Brussels and Honiton bobbin laces. A1059: Early 20thC Brussels bobbin la ce

15 H3753: late 19thC Honiton bobb
H3753: late 19thC Honiton bobbin lace 2) Braid or trail lace is a continuous shaped bobbin tape joined back on itself as the work proceeds; for example, early Milanese, Russian braid, Idrija lace. A9148 - 11: 17thC Milanese A9148 - 16: late 17thC peasant braid lace ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 13 IV. MIXED LACES From the sixteenth century many laces have been made which combine two or more techniques. These were very popular in the nineteenth century and continue t oday. 1. Bobbin plus needle; for example, Brussels duchesse, Brussels needle lace motifs appliqued on bobbin net, bobbin braid with needle fillings (mezzo punto). H5111 - 38: late 19thC Brussels duchesse ⠀bobbin left, needle right⤀

16 H5111
H5111 - 65: late 19thC Brussels needle lace appli煵踀d on bobbin net ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 14 2. Bobbin plus machine: bobbin mot ifs appliqued on machine net; for example, some 19 th C Honiton and Brussels laces which replaced the more costly laces with hand made net. H5111 - 67:19thC Brussels bobbin appli煵踀d on machine net 3. Needle plus machine 1) Needle lace motifs on ma chine net; for example, some 19 th C Brussels needle applique. 2) Machine woven braid motifs with needle made fillings and/or bars, known as tape or "point" lace; for example, Branscombe point. H5111 - 67: Brussels needle appliqu踀 on machine net 87/340/5: 20thC machine tape with needle fillings ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 15 4. Other mixed lace techniques include crochet with machine braids ("antimacassar

17 " or "Gordon" braid) and crochet braid m
" or "Gordon" braid) and crochet braid motifs with needle lace fillings (nowadays known as Romanian lace or macram踀 crochet). Machine made braid fashioned into lace with crocheted Connecting bars - a popular and time - saving way of making lace in the late 19 th and early 20 th centuries. ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 16 V. KNOTTED LACES Knotted laces probably developed from various kinds of f unctional knotting, originally used to make carrying, hunting and fishing nets. 1. Netted laces are knotted from a single thread wound on a netting shuttle, the mesh regulated by gauges of varying sizes. H7029 - 10: early 20thC netted lace made in Austr alia 2. Macr慭踀 lace is fine hand knotting of multiple threads, chiefly using clove hitches. 86/1746 - 24: fine19thC macram踀 lace on a cravat 3. Tatted lace is knotted from one or more thre

18 ads, wound on and manipulated with smal
ads, wound on and manipulated with small boat - shaped shuttles. The basic knot is similar to that of macram踀. H4652: tatted medallion Note: knotted needle laces are now grouped with the needle laces, because that is apparently where most people would expect to find them, despite their knotted structur e. ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 17 VI. KNITTED LACES Knitted lace is constructed from a single thread manipulated to form a looped openwork fabric a development from functional knitting, which was probably practised as early as the 12 th century. 1. Hand - knitted lace (and any oth er hand - knitted fabric) is made by manipulating the thread with the aid of two or more knitting needles. 17611: early 20thC hand knitted lace border 2. Hand controlled machine knitted lace ⣔桡nd flat knittingÕ) is individually designed for one - off p roduction. While the fabric pr

19 oduced is often indistinguishable from
oduced is often indistinguishable from hand - knitting, it also allows for technical innovations which are unavailable to the hand - knitter. 퉕ntitled팻 detail of a coat of overspun Australian wool designed and machine knit ted by Debra Combes in 1998 3 . Mechanically controlled machine knitted lace is designed for mass - production, and does not necessarily involve a single thread source. ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 18 VII. CROCHETED LACES Crocheted lace is constructed from a single thread, looped by m eans of a hook. It is thought to have developed early in the nineteenth century, from a denser kind of looped fabric used earlier for items of clothing. 1. Simple lace crochet H7400: simple crochet imitating reticella, early 20thC 2. Filet cro chet 86/1746 - 34: filet crochet border, 20thC 3. Relief or Irish crochet

20 H6437: early 20thC Irish crochet
H6437: early 20thC Irish crochet 4. Hairpin crochet in which strips of openwork braid are crocheted around a u - shaped gauge, and later crocheted together to make the completed item. 86/762 - 3: 20 th C hairpin crochet border ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 19 VIII. WOVEN LACES There are no woven laces in the Lace Study Centre and few in the collection. 1. Hand - loomed Varied lace gauze effects, hand woven; detail; ( 6 Earnshaw, p262⤀ 2. Power - loomed A complicated lace weave, power - loomed; detail ( 7 Earnshaw, p 262⤀ And jacquard controlled, 19thC 6 Earnshaw, Pat, Lace Machines and machine laces , Batsford, 1986 7 ditto ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 20 I X. MACHINE - MADE LACES Each category of machine - made lace is related to

21 a particular kind of machinery. 1
a particular kind of machinery. 1. Laces with a looped construction are made on descendants of the warp knitting frame. Raschel knit curtain with inlay threads over a marquisette ground, and detail showing the lighter inlay threads held by each knitted pil lar, and the heavier inlays held only at their extremities. ⠀ 8 Earnshaw p. 64 - 5) 2. Laces with a twist construction are made on the Leavers and related machines. Leavers mat made for the 1900 Paris exhibition and a detail of the structure.⠀ 9 Earnshaw, p.145) 8 ditto 9 ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 21 3. Machine embroidered laces may be automatically embroidered and mass produced on the Schiffli and related machines, Schiffli needlerun on net ⠀ Earnshaw, p247) Early 20thC 퐀chemical lace픀; cotton

22 thread embroidered on a b ase fabric wh
thread embroidered on a b ase fabric which was later dissolved with harsh chemicals. or individually designed for one - off production and embroidered on a hand - controlled machine. 퉓hiro kuro팠man픀s shirt trimmed with lace designed and embroidered in 2001 by Anne Farre n on a domestic sewing machine, using a water - soluble base fabrice . ꤠRosemary Shepherd 2003 Powerhouse Museum, Sydney 22 X. MISCELLANEOUS CONTEMPORARY LACES Textile processes not covered in other categories may produce fabrics with the form of lace, according to the given definition, for the deco ration of dress and household furnishings. A fabric constructed entirely from hot glue by Yogesh Purohit Sarah Maris made this lace fabric by stitching together three layers of synthetic organza with a square grid, then burning a hole in the m iddle of each square, thus making⃔ a pattern of spaces