Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Torchiaio for handkerchiefs

15th century handkerchief press in the Museo Correr
Someone asked a question that got me chasing handkerchiefs again.  They're just such a sweet little bit. Great for largesse and tiny so a little embroidery or lace goes a really long way. I know I've linked to it before, but Margaret Roe's article on early handkerchiefs is wonderful and makes me want to read loads more on the subject.  I used the terms she provided for Italian hankies and plugged them into the search engine of all of Venice's museums and turned up this amazing thing.
It is a 15h century handkerchief press. Made of cypress wood and featuring carvings of a knight and his lady. The carver in me had a serious squee moment.  Not because I'm up to that sort of carving yet, but because the size makes it something much more approachable than the big chests I've been eyeing (and laughing at myself for even considering.)

I also turned up another reticella hankie I hadn't seen before.
17th century Italian lace handkerchief in the Met

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