HNW - Macrame- 16th cent.

Mike Newell 72123.411 at
Mon Jun 21 07:49:45 PDT 1999

Dear List:

I've been browsing through some lace books lately and found pictures of
Renaissance macrame -- and boy does it look like modern macrame,only more

Bath, Virginia Churchill, "Lace", Henry Regnery Company, Chicago,1974

        p.29 shows a lovely  macrame border (Italy, 16-17th cent) of linen
with    beads (weighing down the bottom of the fringe?). Owned by the Art 
Institute of Chicago. It's figural macrame -- a man and woman alternate   
with intricate bands of knots.

        p.149 shows a *gorgeous* piece of 15th century English sprang
        (owned by the Metropolitan Museum of Art).
        Ms. Bath's text mentions the possibility of sprang and macrame
becoming        a  basis for bobbin lace, which I found both logical and

Jackson, Mrs. F. Nevill "Old Handmade Lace",  Dover Publications, NY 1987

        p.173, definition for "knotted lace" discusses Punto a Groppo (a
        I've seen used for macrame some time ago). There is a photo of
        a piece of Italian knotted lace (macrame) of the 16th cent on

Ricci, Elisa, "Italian Lace Designs: 243 Classic Examples", Dover

        fig.235,"Towel with lacis insertions and a macrame border,
        16th century"

        fig.237 "wide border and edging with macrame fringe, 16th cent"

        fig.239"wide border and edging with macrame fringe,16th cent"

I wish I had knownallaout this 20 years or so ago when people were asking
me if macrame was period for SCA use. Oh, well, some of these boks hadn't
been reprinted then. 

I'd advise anyone seriously researching macrame to look at every lace book
they can get their hands on -- the 19th century ones are probably very
helpful, as they often have huge wonderful photo plates of extant work.

Hope this is useful to someone.

- --Kathryn
SCA: Kathryn Goodwyn
"too many centuries...too little time"
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