For discussions of lace history and lace identification.  You can post a photo into a comment box for a lace you want to discuss.  Bobblin lace history.  About historic lace. Kinds of lace.  Distinguish types of lace.

We can identify a piece of lace for you, but we need good detail.  At least one photo with this kind of detail is necessary.  Otherwise we are just guessing.  A shot of the whole thing is useful because that shows us the style.  Style gives us clues to date and possibly geographical origin.  But we need the detail shot to tell us how it was made.

Members: 106
Latest Activity: Jul 10

Examples + Resources


Bobbin lace    antiquebobbinlace     bobbinlace3     Needle lace    needlelace2 

Descriptions of several styles of lace -

To compare needle lace, tatting and crochet, Kathleen Minniti's sampler.

My antique lace boards on Pinterest 

My collection of boards on Pinterest

Tatting     tatting2   tatting3      

Embroidery on tulle-needlerun      Embroidery on tulle-tambour        Carrickmacross  

Filet lace    filetlace2    filetlace3   filet lace4    Buratto 

Sol lace   sollace2   sol lace3

Knitted lace    knittedlace2     Crochet lace        Irish crochet lace      IrishCrochet2      

Chemical lace   ChemicalLace2  chemical lace3     chemical lace4     

See this for a technical explanation of the chemical lace process.

Barmen machine lace        Raschel machine lace     Leavers machine

machine1 (not sure what machine)   

I don't know how this machine relates to the Barmen or Rascheel (or other machine)

Bobbin tape lace  bobbin tape lace 2   

Mixed tape lace-machinetape      Romanian needlepoint lace  

For recognizing Swedish bobbin lace:




The Koon collection CD is a collection of images from the Eunice Sein Koon
Collection of Lace donated to IOLI by Ms. Koon. Ms. Koon was the editor of
Lace Craft Quarterly and a collector of lace.  It is not related to the
Minnesota collection to the best of my knowledge.  The CD is a series of
Powerpoint slides organized as the collection pieces are numbered.  There
are approximately 100 pieces of various types of lace in the Koon
collection.  Pictures from the CD could be copied and pasted into another
Powerpoint presentation, or the images could be used to request pieces of
lace from the collection for study by IOLI members.  Policy for use of this
lace is described on p. 58 of the IOLI Member Handbook. -- Jo Ann Eurell


The IOLI - Internation Organization of Lace, Inc. has a study box of lace fragments that members can borrow.  

(I am searching for a link)

IOLI also has a lending library for members' use

A site with good photos of high quality antique laces: ;

Discussion Forum

Lace Identificatio 1 Reply

Hi everyone, i have a lovely 1920s dress made from the prettiest lace, i assume its machine made, but can someone tell me what tis style of lace is called? Thanks in advance !Continue

Started by Emily Bernardini. Last reply by Administrator Jul 4.

Indexes for 'A Lace Guide for Makers and Collectors' by Gertrude Whiting 9 Replies

Someone of IOLI told me about 'A Lace Guide for Makers and Collectors' by Gertrude Whiting (1920). I can't find who, but thank you! This book has a LARGE number of grounds, with names, photo and…Continue

Started by Jo Edkins. Last reply by Jo Jul 2.

Help with Needlepoint Lace ID 16 Replies

HI All,I have recently acquired this wonderful lace collar which I believe is a needle or needlepoint lace. Even though I have purchased 3 books on lace ID(which I love by the way)  I often become…Continue

Started by Jill Schwartz. Last reply by Administrator Feb 15.

Lace Maps 3 Replies

I thought it might be useful to post a map of part of the lace making world. This google map shows part of modern Belgium. The red balloon i the town of Mechelen/Mechlin/Malines. It is haflway…Continue

Tags: Mechlin, lace history, lace identification

Started by Administrator. Last reply by Administrator Feb 11.

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Identification-History to add comments!

Comment by Administrator on June 30, 2017 at 7:30pm

I agree with Karen. If you look closely at the dense parts you can see vertical striping that runs parallel to the direction of working. Bobbin lace cloth stitch would have the passives and workers showing equal prominence. Also the thick thread surrounding the motifs is too prominent: it rises too far above the surface of the lace. This suggests it was run in by hand after the lace was made. Also look closely to how far apart the lace threads are that hold the gimp in place. In handmade bobbin lace the lace threads would cross over the gimp at every row. So the evidence suggests machine lace with a hand run-in gimp.

The dense parts don't look anything like close worked buttonhole stitches.


Comment by Barbara Vanselow on June 28, 2017 at 9:38pm

Thank you so much for your comments. 

Comment by Karen Thompson on June 28, 2017 at 7:56pm

This is a nice machine made lace imitating Blonde bobbin lace

Comment by Loretta Holzberger on June 28, 2017 at 6:28pm

The floral portions don't even look like needle lace, and the combinations used do not look anything like Alencon lace. I don't know enough about bobbin lace grounds to identify it as any of them, but perhaps it could be a machine made lace.

Comment by Barbara Vanselow on June 28, 2017 at 3:00pm

I am hoping someone can help me identify the lace in the picture even though the picture is less that ideal.  The card identifies the lace as Alencon which I know is a needle lace, but it doesn't look like the pictures I have seen in books. 

Thank you in advance  

Comment by Administrator on May 7, 2017 at 7:01pm

Of possible use for historic clothing. 

Comment by Barbara Vanselow on March 28, 2017 at 2:11pm

Thank you for your comments.

Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti on March 27, 2017 at 7:34pm

The Victorian Branch of the Australian Lace Guild organized a trip to the Machine made Lace  place some years ago.  It was fascinating, - and this machine reminds me of that outing. It was Very noisy, and ear plugs would have been useful!!  they showed us how they punch out the cards for the machines, and it was fascinating to watch the bobbins of thread zig-zagging around each other!!

Not being on Facebook, I only got a brief glimpse of that photo you referred to, Lorelei, but it was enough to jog my memory of that interesting afternoon.

Comment by Administrator on March 27, 2017 at 5:54pm

I don't know how this machine relates to the other major lace machines. 

Comment by Administrator on March 27, 2017 at 5:29pm

Lace 20C and 20D is a hand made bobbin lace with hand made needle elements. Carolina is right about the bundle of threads.

Blue line shows the bundle of threads (which moves threads from the end of one motif to the top of another). Purple surrounds bobbin cloth stitch. Orange outlines bobbin half stitch. Red rings show needle made rings. Green surrounds an area filled with needle lace ground -- twisted buttonhole with little spots.

It was common for duchesse of the last half of the 19th century to have needle lace inserts. The rings were common, but the twisted BH filling was not. The photo of the whole piece does not show us enough of the design to determine exactly what style or period this lace belongs to. We need a better photo of an area 6x6 inches (or 8 x 10 inches).


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