Glimpse of Spitalfields lace donated to East End archives

HISTORIC lace made by Spitalfields lace workers have been added to the collection at Tower Hamlets archives centre. The four pieces of work were donated by the three daughters of Mrs Ann Maitland MacEwen. It is not known how Mrs MacEwen came by the coll

HISTORIC lace made by Spitalfields lace workers have been added to the collection at Tower Hamlets archives centre.

The four pieces of work were donated by the three daughters of Mrs Ann Maitland MacEwen.

It is not known how Mrs MacEwen came by the collection but it is thought that they were made by students at the Spitalfields School of Design.

One of the items, a black silk purse decorated with beaded edges is inscribed with the words Spitalfields School of Design 1848.


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The school was set up in 1842 with government support and capitalised on the heritage of the silk weaving trade which Huguenot refugees brought over to Spitalfields in the seventeenth century.

The other pieces in the acquisition are a silk needle case embroidered with a flower design, which was made by Amy Cooper.

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The collection at the local history library in Bancroft Road, Mile End, is completed by two children's lace bonnets.

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