Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday Video: Lace in 18thc Virginia

Friday, May 27, 2016

Isabella reporting,

Today nearly all lace is produced by machine, and as a result it decorates everything from lingerie to t-shirts and doll clothes. Lace has lost some of its cachet - but once handmade lace was as valuable and treasured as a piece of fine jewelry. This video from George Washington's Mount Vernon features Sarah Woodyard, journeywoman mantua-maker (one of our favorite historic tradespeople from Colonial Williamsburgand Cynthia Chin of Mount Vernon. Using reproductions made in the shop as examples, Sarah explains the importance of lace to fashionable 18thc Virginians.


Anonymous said...

Very nice video. I'd like to see the laces up close. It was hard to see them in detail, but the discussion about their uses was informative.

Elli said...

My great grandmother sold lace to make ends meet. Her husband was an ostler, earning at best a subsistence living, and I believe, a heavy drinker.

We have a sample book of hers - dozens of lace patterns mounted on blue paper, elaborate and inventive. I would love to display them but they are so partial that I can't figure out how to do it in a pleasing way. The completed pieces must have been amazing.

A lace maker and an ostler - do they not seem as if they were from another world, far far past? And yet they lived and worked in Salem Massachusetts, little more than a hundred years ago.

mamafrog said...

I don't know if it was just my computer or the recording but this was very hard to hear. It was well done and interesting, but I wish the recording sound had been turned up!

QNPoohBear said...

They don't even make and sell lace anymore on Burano in Venice. I have some gorgeous tatted lace from the early 20th century. It's scrumptious and the cheap nylon stuff sold at Jo-Ann's doesn't even compare. I wish this dying art would be revived.

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