How to Identify Antique Lace

Antique lace can be identified by its fabric or material, the crafting or crocheting method, design motifs, and overall quality.

How to Identify Antique Lace
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Overview
Antique lace is a textile popular among tapestry and textile collectors in general and a specialized subgroup of antique lace enthusiasts in particular. Collectors may mount their antique lace sample on a contrasting background such as black velvet and have it framed. Antique lace samples date back as far as the 16th century. Particular antique lace samples have been discovered from Spanish, French, Venetian and English creators. A number of distinguishing characteristics can help you identify antique lace.
Step 1
Note the material. Antique lace is woven from a cotton thread.
Step 2
Look for hand-crafting. Antique lace will be made by a fine metal crochet hook. Typically, the lace's motifs will be made separately then joined together by mesh using small loops called picots.
Step 3
Look for motifs associated with the lace's reported or potential country of origin. For example, Irish antique lace will include motifs of shamrocks, harps, roses, daisies and butterflies.
Step 4
Look for a three-dimensional appearance. Antique lace is often padded with raised additional layers of motifs.
Step 5
Examine the quality. Lace continues to be made today, but antique lace will be of superior quality.
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identify antique lace
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identify
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Resources
reference
Document on the History of Antique Lace
reference
Article on Identifying Characteristics of Antique Lace