Exeter Chromatic (lace)

New Acquisitions


Devon lace teachers and their students made a new piece of lace for the 2020 exhibition ‘By Royal Appointment’. Inspired by an old lace design and an historic style of Devon lace the piece, named ‘Exeter Chromatic’, brings RAMM’s extensive lace collection into the 21st century.

In 1851 W.L. Gill of Colyton exhibited a lace shawl at the Great Exhibition. Flower sprigs made in coloured silks were attached to black machine-made net. Even though black lace became very fashionable in the 1850s due to influences from the continent, the shawl was something very innovative. Known as Colyton chromatic lace, this shawl is now at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. It is not uncommon for 21st century Devon lace-makers to make traditional designs in coloured silks.

Devon Lace Teachers and RAMM volunteers Carol McFadzean and Liz Trebble designed ‘The Exeter Chromatic’. They took inspiration from a lace design in RAMM’s collection by an Exeter School of Art student around 1870. It is likely that the art student did not make lace, so creating prickings for the new piece was very challenging.
‘Exeter Chromatic’ is a tribute to the Coltyon chromatic shawl. It is also fitting that the design is based on one created at the Exeter School of Art which was housed in the same building as RAMM.

This Honiton lace was made and designed by Anne Buzzacott, Pauline Cochrane, Sylvia Harbison, Carol McFadzean, Holly Morgenroth, Shirley Pavey, Alison Thoburn, Liz Trebble and Pat Webber.

This object is not on display.

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