For your consideration, an absolutely exquisite, rare antique Victorian Chantilly blonde lace shawl, circa 1870s. It is a very generously sized shawl with magnificent craftsmanship. These shawls were oversized during the Victorian era to fit over the bustle of a gown from that period. There are seven large, very ornate bouquets with meandering vines, flowers, leaves and esprit throughout. The shawl is in wonderful condition. There are a few tiny areas of bride disconnect, and smaller than pen tip hole of no great significance. The overall condition is excellent, strong and supple. This magnificent shawl, surviving from the 1870s to present day, is a definite museum quality collector's piece.
Measurements: mid section width 104" (8.6 ft.) across , the bottom hem fans to a total of 198" (16.5 ft.), the length at neck front to bottom is 48" long. The circumference of the neck is 20".
Chantilly lace originated as a handmade bobbin lace, originally created in Chantilly, France in the 17th century. The lace is known for its fine ground, outlined pattern, and abundant detail. The Victorians began producing machine made copies of this popular lace. After an eclipse early in the 20th century, Chantilly lace again became a favorite in the 1950s. It flaunted and covered up the female figure. In the 1950s, and often since then, that combination has driven men wild.
Today on the runways in Paris, lace—Chantilly lace in particular—is making a comeback. Riccardo Tisci of Givenchy told American Vogue that “lace is delicate and romantic, but at the same time it has to be strong." To that end, he riffed on the tune of soft/strong by working frothy Chantilly lace into modest, high-neck blouses.