Here are photos of an old silk black lace that I haven't come across before. I thought initially it was machine but looking at the close up I wonder if it might be handmade..?? Any thoughts anyone and any ideas of lace type? Then there's an antique Honiton (I think) collar. To me even the tape itself looks handmade but I don't have the eye or knowledge  you do. Thanking you very much, Deborah

PS Sorry that I posted this by mistake on the general discussion board and couldn't figure out how to delete it from there.

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I wouldn't call the second piece, the dress front, "Honiton": the motifs are not typical, including how the cloth-stitch areas are made, nor are the fillings but there were many less common fillings. However, I don't know what to call it--I don't think I've ever seen anything like it. I will defer to Lorelei on identification. I agree, however, that it's handmade. The close-up, at least, is of the back of the lace, but that's actually useful because you can see the threads carried across the back of the cloth-stitch areas in braids.

The photos of the black lace aren't clear enough for me to tell for sure, but the overall pattern and what I can see of the "texture" of the solid areas, it looks machine-made to me. One way to tell would be to look at the picots on the edge: if the threads making the picot clearly come out of the body of the lace, make the picot, and then go back into the body of the lace, then it's handmade. If the picots come in and out of a sort of chain along the edge, then the lace is probably machine-made. Strips of machine-made picots were sometimes whipped to worn edges of handmade lace, but that's less common.

To get good photos of black lace, by the way, put the lace on a moderately dark background. Then the camera will pick up the lesser contrast of the highlights and shadows of the threads within the lace and not be overwhelmed by contrast between the lace and the background. In general photograph light-colored laces on moderately light or medium backgrounds, and dark laces on moderately dark backgrounds. I often use the light blue cover stock for white or ecru laces and the medium-red cover stock for any color lace including black. You could try even darker backgrounds as well--I don't photograph black lace that often.

Thanks so much Nancy - that's very helpful. I'll keep researching to see what the Honiton-ish one might be and will try to get  a better pic of the black lace tomorrow (late here now). Thanks again.  Best, Deborah

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