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What is "Alencon lace" - Definition & Explanation
Last Updated on: 02-Apr-2024 (3 months, 12 days ago)
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Alencon lace
Alen?on lace is a type of lace that originated in the French town of Alen?on in the 16th century. It is known for its intricate design and high level of craftsmanship, which makes it one of the most highly prized laces in the world.

Alen?on lace is made using a needle lace technique, which involves stitching threads onto a base fabric using a needle and thread. The threads are usually made from silk, but they can also be made from other materials such as cotton or linen. The base fabric is typically made from a fine mesh or netting material.

One of the defining characteristics of Alen?on lace is its intricate floral designs, which are created using a combination of stitches such as picots, fillings, and bars. The lace also features raised motifs, which are created by padding the threads with extra layers of stitching.

The process of making Alen?on lace is highly labor-intensive and requires a great deal of skill and patience. Each piece of lace is made by hand, and it can take weeks or even months to complete a single yard of lace. This is one reason why Alen?on lace is so expensive and highly prized by collectors.

In addition to its beauty and craftsmanship, Alen?on lace is also known for its versatility. It can be used to create a wide range of garments and accessories, including wedding gowns, veils, tablecloths, and curtains. It is often used to add a touch of elegance and sophistication to high-end fashion designs.

Alen?on lace is often associated with the French royal court, where it was used to create elaborate gowns and other garments for members of the royal family. It was also popular among the wealthy upper classes, who commissioned lace makers to create custom pieces for them.

Today, Alen?on lace is still made in the town of Alen?on, although production has declined significantly since its heyday in the 18th and 19th centuries. The lace is also made in other parts of France, as well as in other countries such as Belgium and Italy.

Some of the top users of Alen?on lace today include high-end fashion designers and bridal wear designers. The lace is also popular among collectors and enthusiasts, who appreciate its beauty and historical significance.

One of the most famous examples of Alen?on lace is the wedding dress worn by Kate Middleton when she married Prince William in 2011. The dress featured a bodice and skirt made from satin gazar, and was covered in hand-embroidered Alen?on lace. The dress was designed by Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen, and was widely praised for its timeless elegance and craftsmanship.

In conclusion, Alen?on lace is a highly prized and sought-after type of lace that is known for its intricate designs and high level of craftsmanship. It has a rich history that dates back several centuries, and has been worn by royalty, aristocrats, and fashion icons alike. Today, it continues to be popular among high-end fashion designers and collectors, who appreciate its beauty and historical significance.
Alencon lace
A needlepoint lace on a fine net background. Characterized by a heavy thread (cordonnet) outlining the design. Although usually machine made, there are instances where the cordonnet is inserted/done by hand.

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