Needle lace, filet/lacis (knotted ground and darned in two directions), alternating reticella squares (open cutwork), and bobbin lace edging; bleached linen (est.)
Mounted: 148 x 151.1 cm (58 1/4 x 59 1/2 in.); Overall: 145.1 x 144.2 cm (57 1/8 x 56 3/4 in.)
Gift of Mrs. Edward B. Greene, G. G. Wade and J. H. Wade, Jr. for the Ellen Garretson Wade Memorial Collection 1923.995
The large size and square shape suggest that this textile would likely have been used as a table cloth.
Textiles often incorporate multiple needlework techniques within a single piece. One of the main techniques in this example of lace is called cutwork. In cutwork, portions of the textile ground, such as a linen or cotton cloth, are cut away and threads are removed to create holes. The edges of the hole are then reinforced with embroidery and a pattern of needle lace can be created within the perimeter. Rather than adding to the cloth to create a design, the craftsperson removes threads to fabricate a pattern.
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