This beautiful Chantilly lace shawl, at its widest point, is nearly ten feet across. Its ample size makes perfect sense in the context of the fashionable silhouette of the period. By 1860, the voluminous bell-shaped skirts of the previous decade began to flatten out in front. The back of the skirt took up the excess volume and shifted the focus to the back of the body. Supported by cage crinolines, skirts became the perfect surface for the display of oversized, triangular lace shawls. Increased efficiency at the lace making centers at Chantilly, Caen and Bayeux, France made these large, technically sophisticated bobbin lace shawls possible. Production used the part lace technique, meaning parts of the shawl were created by different individuals and later were pieced together, often without visible seams.
This object was
Caroline F. Anderson.
It is credited
Gift of Caroline F. Anderson.
Its dimensions are
W (upper edge): 300 cm (9 ft. 10 1/8 in.)
Cite this object as
Shawl (France); silk; W (upper edge): 300 cm (9 ft. 10 1/8 in.); Gift of Caroline F. Anderson; 1930-1-2