Out Adventuring visiting tapestry and lace exhibits in Brussels

Out Adventuring visiting tapestry and lace exhibits in Brussels

We have been out adventuring and paid a visit to The City Museum situated on the Grand place. The museum covers all aspects of the Brussel’s history including the production and trade of art and craft objects.

Altar pieces, silver and goldsmith work and some magnificent wall tapestries are held in the collection. Brussels, had the finest quality weavers in the Renaissance and was the undisputed center of tapestry weaving in Europe.

At the time tapestries were considered more valuable than paintings and often given as diplomatic gifts.

Needless to say I appreciated and admired the detailed work on these textiles.

As you can see non-falsh photography is permitted in this museum.

This labour-intensive art is covered in depth in an article on European Tapestry Production and Patronage from 1400–1600 sets the Brussels tapestry industry in context. Make a cuppa and have a read if you are interested.

Of course one of Brussels’s specialities is lace and I could not be here  in Brussels without paying a visit to the Costume and Lace Museum. In 1977 an 18th century warehouse was transformed to a museum space to emphasize the textile heritage of Brussels.

Currently the exhibit “Handmade” aims to provide an insight into the way garments and fashion accessories were made before the invention of sewing machines in 1850.

To my delight, included in the exhibition was both sewing and embroidery band samplers.  Regular readers will see and understand where my band sampler idea came from as these are long school girl band samplers that were on display. Unfortunately this is the only photo I took as photography was not allowed, even with no flash. This rule was enforced but I had taken it before I realised.

Notice the door near the samplers and you will have a sense of the scale of these pieces.

Lace of course makes a good souvenir. There are real lace producers in the city but I also noticed that you do need to be aware of cheap lace produced in China and sold to tourists.

One comment

  1. Wow! How beautiful! I love old tapestries but I have a passion for old lace. It's too bad many museums don't allow photos. Traveling is not my cup of tea so there are many wonderful things in this world that I will never get to see unless I see them online.

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