This is a tiny cushion made for a bride with a piece of handmade antique lace. The lace is old – the item itself new – the pin to be borrowed and returned to the giver and the whole thing blue – all in a box stamped in gold from the Royal School of Needlework.
My grandmother could make lace. My mother, who also could make lace, loved to collect bobbins. She had old ones but also a whole set made in glass by my partner, who was into a change of career at the time – He was really into ‘glass blowing’ but other things emerged!
There are many different types and shapes – some with spangles some without. Poor people might not be able to afford spangles so may have had a shirt button or a shell attached to the end of the bobbin. Some bobbins were bone and had a person’s name inscribed on them.
A lacemaker’s cushion is very beautiful. It also reminds me of the things many women had to do to help support their families in days gone by!
Lacemaking was a painstaking occupation usually for the women of poorer households in Britain in the eighteenth century. It took many hours to make a complex strip to trim a handkerchief. Later, lacemaking was done by machine.
Countries all over the world often have a lace tradition.
I’ll never forget the view from Ted Hughes house. where the valley was once full of lace makers making black lace. This was the fashion for so long, following the ‘mourning’ for Prince Albert. See the brick tower in the distance.
Note – forever practical – I am selling some wooden bobbins and Pelham Puppets from ‘The Trading Post and Coffee Shop’ in Kemp Town but only have a cabinet for an initial two weeks – after that I may revert back to selling things on ebay.
and for real nostalgia how about a fascmile of our Pelham Play Book the one we published in the 50s – this one however comes with a DVD or all the plays made 10 years ago – perfect for anyone’s 60th or even 70th Birthday £10.00 and gift wrapped – for this see ebay!
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