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Mezzo Punto

Border of mezzo punto tape lace, early 17th century, Italy, made of bobbin lace. Border of mezzo punto tape lace, early 17th century, Italy, made of bobbin lace. Copyright Victoria and Albert Museum, London, acc. no. T.97-1973.

Mezzo punto is a form of lace (and more precisely a tape lace) that dates back to the European late Middle Ages and is made using a combination of bobbin lace, woven and buttonhole stitch techniques. The technique was re-introduced in the second half of the nineteenth century under the name Renaissance lace.

There are several forms of mezzo punto, all made out of tape lace that is combined into a larger design.

(a) with a series of designs made with straight tape, produced with lace bobbins. These are joined together with needlepoint fillings and brides (linking bars).

(b) with a straight tape made with lace bobbins or commercially woven on a loom. The tape is folded and puckered in order to fit a design that is drawn or printed in advance on a backing cloth or card. The designs are joined together with needlepoint fillings and brides.

(c) with a straight, commercially woven tape that is used to create a series of individual motifs joined together with needlemade fillings and tulle (resulting in [French] reseau). This type of lace is often called Point de Milan, and was a form of commercial lace made in Belgium in the early twentieth century.

See also the TRC Needles entry on a schematic survey of needle made lace types.

Source: EARNSHAW, Pat (1984). A Dictionary of Lace, Aylesbury: Shire Publications Ltd, pp. 110-111.

V&A online catalogue (retrieved 29th June 2016).

GVE

Last modified on Tuesday, 06 June 2017 20:28