If you love sewing, fabrics and quilts you have no doubt bumped into lace. Lace has had its ups and downs in popularity but its presence is omnipresent in most cultures. We may not make or even own lace but we all know what it is and how it looks. It comes in all kinds of shapes but its origins are a bit fuzzy. All of this piqued my interest so I decided to do some research so that all of us can learn more lively lace facts!
1. Origins - If you want to know absolutely everything about lace, check out this paper. What I quickly learned is that although the origins are murky, most people agree that it began around 1500 in Europe.
2. What country - There is much discussion about whether Belgium or Italy was the first European country to make the best lace. After reading all the lace sites, I decided it was Belgium. Why? I guess this post convinced me.
3. Origin of the word - Its earliest meaning is tie and early forms of lace were really ties. Fabrics or linen threads were tied together. Read more about it here.
4. Patron Saint - But of course! The Patron Saint of Lace is Saint John Regis. That and many other fun trivia about lace can be found by reading this page.
5. Most popular for - Weddings, particularly about the European Nobility. They were all just copying Queen Victoria but there are great photos to look at with just a click.
6. How many kinds - There are four kinds of lace. Duchess Lace and Rosepoint Lace are antique methods and no longer in practice. Today there are only Princess Lace and Renaissance Lace. You can see pictures and learn the process of each type at this page.
7. Today? - Most lace is made by machine but there are still designers and royalty (like Kate Middleton) who have hand made lace in their wedding dresses. Kate's lace took twenty three, yes 23 lace makers to complete. Each of these lace makers had studied seven years to learn how. Holy Cow! Read all the details where I did.
8. Tatting - According to this site, tatting is a lost art begun by fisherman who tied knots. They claim it is just another name for lace but other sites dispute that so you'll have to make up your own mind.
9. Lace wigs - These wigs are the most realistic and expensive as they tie each strand to a delicate lace like fabric at the front. Order yours here.
10. Plays about Lace? It's not about lace but it has lace in the title. Arsenic and Old Lace is a perennial favorite in theaters across the country. This page has every detail you would ever want to know about it.
11. Expressions with lace - The one I have heard the most was my Irish Mother calling some people "Lace Curtain Irish" and others "Shanty" Irish. These Irish expressions and more are discussed on this Irish page.
12. Favorite lace song - Hands down Jerry Lee Lewis singing Chantilly Lace is my favorite. Enjoy
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If you like facts, check out this post about batting facts!