October 20th, 2011
My fascination with crocheted lace continues. While researching petticoat edging, I’ve come across so many collar patterns from the 1840s and 50s that I finally gave in. For my first attempt, I chose a pattern by crochet goddess Cornelia Mee in imitation of Brussels lace. I’m not quite sure in what way it is meant to resemble Brussels lace though.
There were still two more rows to be added when this picture was taken. They didn’t do much to increase its affinity to any Brussels lace I’ve ever seen.
This is real lace. I found the photograph (culled from Ebay) on Lace News. Brussels lace is a pillow lace, originally made in and around Brussels, naturally. It’s frequently confused with other types of lace made in the same region, including Brussels point, a needle lace that is quite different. At least the experts say so.
Back to my crocheted collar. It seemed awfully small when I began, so I added an extra 30 stitches to the starting chain, thinking that my gauge was off (always an iffy thing with an historic pattern) or that necks are simply bigger in 2011. But when I finished pressing it flat I was horrified to discover that my “swan-like” neck was just swimming inside the collar. So I immediately began a new iteration, sticking strictly to the pattern. I’m nearly done with the new version (it works up very quickly) and plan to give away the enormous one to someone who will wear it with modern blouses, which have wider necklines.