Ruff edging


The Victoria and Albert Museum

The Victoria and Albert Museum

The technique of cutwork used to make this piece of lace was the creation of a delicate structure of needle lace stitches across the spaces cut in a fine linen ground. It reached the height of its popularity in the late sixteenth and early seventeeth century, when it was used to decorate every type of linen and in particuar to draw attention to the face and throat in the form of collars and ruffs.

This short length of border may well have been part of a ruff, and it has been reconstructed in this way in the museum with the attachment of a linen support.

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  • Title: Ruff edging
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 1600/1620
  • Location: Italy
  • Physical Dimensions: Length: 203 cm lace laid flat, Width: 11.5 cm lace laid flat, Length: 78 in, Width: 4.25 in
  • Provenance: Given from the collection of Mary, Viscountess Harcourt GBE
  • Medium: Needle lace worked in linen thread

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