Enter a world of antique textiles.
Join one of our Antique Lace or Needlework Tours in Central London.
Click on the Textile Talks Itinerary Page to discover more.
The tour commences in the Grand Entrance foyer of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Cromwell Road, South Kensington, London SW7 2RL.
We will take a tour around selected galleries of the museum, focusing on antique lace, whitework, costume, portraits, and objects that relate to lace and its place within the culture of each age. During the tour Ann will give a brief introduction to the history of lace, using these objects to illustrate the various techniques of lace making, where and when it was made, and for whom. The talk is suitable for both beginners and enthusiasts.
After the tour we move on to a cafe for tea (or coffee), where we can enjoy a relaxing chat whilst Ann will hand around items of antique lace from her personal collection, for you to examine and enjoy. A large quantity of handmade (and a few machine made) laces dating from the 17th to 20th centuries will be included.
Lace from the late 17th to the 20th century will be included. It’s a rare opportunity to see items of this age, without them being behind glass in a museum. Some of the pieces will be available to be carefully handled ( these are exquisite, historic items, most of which are between 100 to 350 years old), but some of the more fragile items will be passed around on cards.
Individual items may vary, but will include examples of laces such as:-
Brussels lace, English laces (including Honiton, Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire laces). Irish laces. Maltese lace, White work embroideries, early Italian, French and Flemish laces including Alencon, Valenciennes and Mechlin, as well as Victorian ‘imitation’ and early machine laces.
Due to the nature of the event, most of the items will be small ‘study pieces’ - some of them fragments, or incomplete works, with a few larger items. Click here to see some examples of the sort of fascinating and beautiful items Ann will typically be bringing along.
A cup of tea or coffee is included in the price. Entry to the museum is free.