Early History Of Irish Crochet Lace

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This book traces the history of Irish crochet lace which began during the Great Irish famine (1846–53) as a lower-priced version of the traditional needle and bobbin laces which were fashionable at the time. It provided much-needed income and saved many thousands of lives in those desperate times.

The wives of clergymen, nuns and other benevolent women organised teaching and marketing in the early days particularly in Cork in the south and Clones in the north. Some beautiful laces were produced, especially around Clones. However, after the first few decades the industry declined.

In the 1880s a revival was actively fostered by the Cork School of Art, the Dublin Metropolitan School of Art, various convents, Ben Lindsey of the Lace Depot, Lady Aberdeen of the Irish Industries Association, Alan S. Cole, a lace expert from the South Kensington Museum (now known as the Victoria & Albert Museum), the Branchardière Trust Fund, and the Royal Dublin Society. New designs and promotion were particularly important.

The Congested Districts Board and the Department of Agricultural & Technical instruction, together with the convents held lace and crochet classes in the country areas.

The names of the many distinguished organizations involved are mentioned here to show the scope and importance of the Irish laces.

Thousands of girls benefited, mostly the daughters of small farmers and labourers.

This fresh account draws on a wide range of rare old books and records as well as examples of laces from museums, libraries and a convent.

It includes large illustrations of 39 laces, a few which are almost primitive and others which are superb works of art.

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Title: Mary Card: Australian Crochet Lace Designer
Price: $10

Number of Pages: 64