I saw the exhibition A history of fashion in 100 objects at the Fashion Museum in Bath and was most interested to see what lace it included. The first showcase includes some beautiful embroidered and lace embellished gloves so I was not disappointed. There were small lace edgings in some of the dress on show but it wasn’t until the section on Regency fashion that lace became prominent. A frock from 1817 of madras lace (shown in the image on the left) was very delicate. According to the caption, the development of machine made net in 1809 meant that all over lace dresses were very popular at this time. A stunning example of a dress incorporating lace was an 1860s dress of pale green silk with applied black machine lace combined with a Bucks point handmade bobbin lace collar.
A red and white 1870 dress with bustle and low décolletage also included some pretty blonde style lace around the neckline. There was not much lace on show in the later, more modern, sections of the exhibition – probably because the interesting lace dresses were on show in the concurrent Lace in fashion exhibition. I did think the 2011 House of McQueen silk tulle embroidered gown by Sarah Burton was quite lace-like though.