Saturday, February 09, 2008

Antique Laces

While clearing out some family belongings, my friend Nancy found a metal box (bread box?) filled with needlework: mostly crocheted items, some tatting and about a dozen knitted lace edgings and insertions. She thinks the laces belonged to her great grandmother and her sisters, who lived in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

With Nancy's permission, I gently washed one of them. This is one of the larger pieces. It is about 34 inches long and 7 inches wide. Does anyone recognize the pattern? It appears to be knit in very fine thread — size 40? 50? Maybe finer?

The lace is cleaner than it was but still discolored and is damaged in some places but overall it's in pretty good shape for something that's 100+ years old. I think any further cleaning and conservation should be done by a professional.


Diana said...

Sue, as I mentioned on Laceknitter's, I think this is the traditional Shetland pattern, Cockleshell.

Bridget said...

I have no clue what it is, but it sure is pretty!

Anonymous said...

Just a tip about what I did cleaning something this old. My mother-in-law had a beautiful handkerchief with a crocheted Irish lace border that was around one hundred years old. It had yellowed due to age and she asked me if I had any idea what to do with it. I put in in a basin of lukewarm water with Biz and changed it every day for a week. By the end of the week the only thing that gave away its age was the design. It wasn't harmed at all by the Biz.