This week, I visited the Gentle Art of the Lacemaker exhibition at the Southland Museum. Our own local lacemaker, Janet Macrae, has a good portion of her private collection on display there and this was a great opportunity to see it.
The exhibition features works from 19th century as well as modern day lacemakers. In historical times, lacemaking was not only the domain of women but also of children as they had small fingers and a lot of time on their hands. The patterns can be complex, the amount of bobbins seemingly infinite, and the attention to detail overwhelming. What fine skills these women and children had.
All of the pieces can be appreciated on their own without aid of magnification. But if you really want to lose yourself in the splendour of the patterns, bring a magnifying glass!
The exhibition is on until 6 June at the Southland Museum. If you want to find out more about lace, visit the NZ Lace Society website.
We're open Wednesdays and Sundays, 2pm-4pm, and by request. Your comments are always welcome!