Monday, February 11, 2013


The latest couture collections feature a very traditional fabric: lace. In particular, lace was prominent in designs for spring 2013 by the Italian designer Valentino. Aptly, lacemaking has its origins in Renaissance Italy. Traditional needle-made lace developed from openwork embroidery techniques in Venice. The insubstantial quality of lace is captured in its Venetian name punto in aria, meaning ‘stitch in the air’.
Originally, luxury fibres such as gold, silver and silk were used to make lace. Modern designers have begun to revive this practice. For example, Halle Berry wore a metallic lace dress by Dolce and Gabbana to the premiere of Cloud Atlas. Her dress is a great example of the flattering effect lace can have on a curvaceous figure. Lace underwear is a more discreet way to celebrate the sensual possibilities, and an abundance of lacy options are available when you shop for bras at

Tights are a simple but effective way to follow the trend for lace this winter when bare legs are no longer practical. With a pair of lacy patterned tights, you can cover up with charisma. Jonathan Ashton has an exciting range of lacy tights to bring a touch of mischief to any outfit.
Lace and fishnet tights inevitably evoke the costumes of shows like Chicago and Cabaret. A new production of the latter opened this autumn at the Savoy Theatre in London, 40 years on from the classic 1972 film. Liza Minnelli’s portrayal of Sally Bowles performing in suspenders and stockings has become an iconic image. Suspenders and hold-ups have enjoyed a revival in recent years, becoming a must-have fashion accessory.

Lace can also have a more old-fashioned, traditionally feminine feel. A modern twist on this quality of lace is currently on display in the Ballgowns exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London: Atsuko Kudo’s lace-printed latex gown. The futuristic design demonstrates that, from lingerie to formal wear, the appeal of lace endures.

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