Natalie Lloyd once said “I like the Eiffel Tower coz it looks like steel and lace!”. Such is the beauty of lace it gets you to fall in love with it and makes you see it in every beautiful creation on Earth. Although it’s not known when lace was invented, we do know that it appeared around the early sixteenth century. Open woven fabrics and fine nets were available since a long time but sophisticated techniques for lace making were developed in Europe. By the second half of the sixteenth century there the lace developed as an openwork fabric, created with needle and single thread, known as needle lace, or multiple threads called bobbin lace.
Although its exact place of origin is not known, the first city associated with its origin is Venice. Venice was an important trading center and was a hub of lace knowledge. By 1600, high quality lace started being made across Europe, including Spain, France, and England, where the women picked up and practiced new skills of garment making. Traveling noblemen and intermarriages between royal families was a channel that spread the trading of lace across borders. Towards the end of the sixteenth century, ruffs and standing collars demanded bold geometric needle lace. Later on, they were gradually replaced by softer collars and bobbin lace. By the mid-seventeenth century, linen lace became flat again, and bobbin and needle lace works became more intricate and refined.
By the eighteenth century lace became increasingly delicate. French needle laces and Flemish bobbin laces
began to dominate the market. Products such as cravat ends and lappets made of such lace were a symbol of wealth and good taste of the wearer. Thanks to industrial revolution in Britain, in 1809, John Heathcoat produced a whole net fabric that did not unravel when cut. This net became the basis for new lace such as Carrickmacross
and Tambour which were ideal for the light-weight dresses of the day.
While lace is a great evening wear option, it can be worn in the daytime as well. The key lies in pairing your lace with the correct shoes and wearing the right color. In the daytime, pair a lacy skirt with a simple round neck T-shirt and flats. Also, you can wear a lace skirt with knitwear to give a more casual look. You may also want to layer up your lace dress. If you wear a lace blouse underneath a mid-length dress it looks cool and solves the problem of the lace being sheer. And if you wear a sheer lace skirt underneath a slightly shorter opaque skirt, it will give an effect of a lace trim. No harm in tying vibrant colors in lace. Yellow, blue, purple are colors that look good in lace. Pair a colored lace top with a neutral colored bottom and you’re ready to go!
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