The popularity of the lace collar is one which knows no wane, a fact which is accounted for by its daintiness, and the note of distinction which it can confer upon the plainest and most commonplace of dresses.
Many of the models seen in the larger shops are very pretty and effective, and the fine hand-made stitchery on these ready-made collars shows marked progress in design and execution. Nevertheless, the woman who desires to express the last word in good taste will acquire some pieces of old lace or embroidery, and fashion for herself a little lingerie decoration which shall possess a character.all its own. Amongst the treasured hoard
Brussels applique lace, formerly a border to a handkerchief, now forms a collar, the points draping gracefully over the shoulders bequeathed by our mothers or grandmothers there frequently may be found an old lace-trimmed or embroidered handkerchief. The size of such an article differs considerably from that of the 7-inch square of cambric now considered sufficient. The pocket-handkerchiefs of our great - grandmothers were at least 18 to 20 inches square. In still earlier days they were even larger. The earliest pictures extant of a lace-trimmed handkerchief is a print by Abraham Basse, depicting the foolish virgins, in seventeenth century costumes, weeping into handkerchiefs of very much the same size as our afternoon teacloths.
If a treasure is found in the shape
How to adapt a lace-trimmed handkerchief into a really handsome collar without spoiling the delicate fabric of an old embroidered handkerchief about 18 inches square, it is best to cut it at one corner and remove a small round for the neck, thus fashioning a very handsome collar, with graceful points to drape over the shoulder. The Brussels applique collar in the illustration was fashioned in this way from a lace-trimmed handkerchief.
Scraps of well-made hand embroidery, such as the little cuff in the illustration, can be adapted, by means of Valenciennes edging and tucked cambric, to serve as side pieces to decorate a coat collar.
The little embroidered muslin collar depicted has been made more tasteful and important by the addition of an old Mechlin frill. The larger collar would win the approval of those who wish to encourage English village industries, for it is of hand-made Branscombe point - that is to say, the collar was fashioned and its lace fillings set in at the little Devonshire village of that name.
Fashion has decreed that the collarless coat must go; it is not a becoming mode, and most women rejoice that they may wear the becoming sailor collar with decorative lace edging or simple hemstitch border.
The jabot frills lend themselves to the using of oddments of real lace. If edging is scarce, the straight hem to which the flounce is sewn can be of real insertion, while the flounce is of cambric or muslin, with a narrow mignonette edge.
Collars of old sprigged India muslin are attractive, and one can often pick up a scrap of such material in an old shop for a very modest sum. The colour of such pieces is very has-monious, having a yellowish tinge and quality which cream, machine-made lace never achieves; but a word of warning is necessary about colour. Some people seem to think that if lace is old, it may be dirty. They are wrong; nothing justifies dirt. We no longer suppose dirt and devotion to be synonymous. Ladies whose lords went to the Crusades vowed that they would wear the same linen until the return of the hero. It is no wonder that many of the Crusaders never returned. The tint Isabeau is well known in Paris. Wash your old lace collars with care, treat them tenderly, but keep them clean.
At the top of this picture is shown a good example of Branscombe point lace. Beneath it is an old hand-embroidered collar in the " Peter Pan" style. The third example is a turn-over hand-embroidered collar, further beautified by means of a Mechlin lace frill. In the lower left-hand corner is a strip of embroidery that would form a delightful finish to a sleeve, while at the right is a scrap of embroidery adapted by means of Valenciennes lace for a side piece to a collar or a cuff A Pretty and Useful Novelty - Embroidered Suede - A Use for Ornamental Beads
The dainty art of hand embroidery is much in request for the decoration of hatpins, and removes them far from the ordinary hatpin in everyday use.
Perhaps the most beautiful specimens of embroidered hatpins are made in soft suede, embroidered in beads, silk and beads, or filoselle alone. The suede can be bought in odd pieces, in many exquisite and varied colourings. It is beautifully soft and pliable, so that it is easy and pleasant to work upon.
These beautiful hatpins are not difficult to embroider, and are in excellent taste. One pretty specimen was of mauve suede embroidered with mauve beads, with touches in black filoselle worked in French knots and finished off with one large centre bead of mauve. Another, of green suede, was decorated with a cluster of Indian wooden beads, so tiny that they looked like small seeds on their background of suede.
An idea for employing real coral on suede for a hatpin is to sew a coral in the centre of the suede, surround it with a tiny circle of steel beads, sewing them down securely.
Then stitch on a circle of coral, and outside this a circle of tiny steel beads. For the outer edge of the hatpin head, thread some coral on to silk of the same shade, and between each coral bead thread three tiny steel ones.
An effective idea is to thread several rather large, flat turquoise blue beads on to a thick strand of dull cinnamon brown filoselle, the suede of the pin-head being also of a cinnamon brown shade. Sew one flat blue bead in the centre. Thread about fourteen gold beads on to some silk, arrange this on the suede to form a circle around the bead. Take up the beads already threaded upon the coarse strand of cinnamon brown silk. Arrange these also in an outer circle, spreading out the beads to allow the cinnamon brown filoselle to show between each one.
An artistic design can be worked out on fawn suede in curious yellow beads. Sew one bead in the centre, then three beads above and three below. Also sew three beads to the right and three beads to the
Mauve suede hatpin embroidered in mauve beads and black filoselle. The tiny beads are caught down in festoons round a centre of French knots in dull gold silk
Curious yellow beads arranged in the shape of a cross form the centre; in each space is sewn a single yellow bead, encircled with small steel beads left; this forms a cross. In the four empty spaces sew a yellow beau; frame it with a little circle of steel beads, also finish off the centre bead on the hatpin head with a circle of steel beads.
When beads are employed in the embellishment of hatpins it is often easier to prepare and finish off the hatpin-head with its suede or silk cover before the embroidery is begun.
The following is a simple and effective method.
Cement or glue a wooden button mould about the size of a two-shilling piece on to a hatpin. When quite firm, cover the front of this with a piece of suede. Cut a round of silk or satin, and run the pin through the centre. Draw this up to the back of the wooden mould, and sew firmly to the suede, which must be drawn tightly over the mould and gathered at the back. Finish it off neatly by joining the suede to the silk which forms the back of the hatpin-head. When silk is embroidered on to the suede the back may be made of the same material and neatly joined, the join being covered by gold thread. The beads must be sewn firmly to the suede with very minute stitches. Use silk of the same shade as the suede at all times.
When a thick strand of filoselle is employed for decorative purposes, together with fairly large beads, lay the silk down upon the suede almost like a. cord; it must be caught down with filoselle of the same shade each side of the bead, or the beads may be threaded on gold thread in the same manner and secured on each side with gold silk.
If a design of a flower or a conventional idea is worked on silk, it is better to embroider the circle of satin or silk before it is placed over the wooden mould.
Black velvet hatpins are smart, worked in filoselle, with a touch of gold. Silk brocade is another suitable fabric; its own design can be embroidered in stem stitch-the embroiderer choosing any shade of silk she may prefer.
Embroidered hatpins are certainly very effective and delightful novelties, and most women will find them useful and charming additions to their present collection.
Flat turquoise beads threaded on dull brown filoselle, em broidered on suede of the same shade, are distinctly artistic and novel
Red coral in short bars interspersed with tiny steel beads and arranged in circles gives a charming effect