Fichu

ca. 1805-1810 (made)
Fichu thumbnail 1
Fichu thumbnail 2
+1
images
Not currently on display at the V&A

Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

A fichu covered the neck and shoulders. This one has been cut from a larger piece of needle lace. It may be related to a set of bed hangings, decorated with bees. (The bee was a Napoleonic symbol.) These bed hangings were originally made at Alençon in France for the Empress Josephine, consort of the Emperor Napoleon, in about 1809. They are now in the Brooklyn Museum, New York.

In the early 19th century the French lace industry largely depended on bobbin lace and machine-made net. Napoleon supported manufacturers of needle lace by making the wearing of French or Brussels lace compulsory at court.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Needle lace worked in linen thread on a net ground
Brief Description
Fichu of needle lace worked in linen thread on a net ground, Alençon, ca. 1805-1810
Physical Description
Triangular shaped fichu of needle lace worked in linen thread and decorated with bees on a net ground.
Dimensions
  • Longest side length: 72cm
  • Shortest side, each length: 48.5cm (minimum)
Object history
The fichu has been cut from a larger piece, and may be related to the set of bed hangings made at Alençon for the Empress Josephine in about 1809, now in the Brooklyn Museum, New York
Summary
A fichu covered the neck and shoulders. This one has been cut from a larger piece of needle lace. It may be related to a set of bed hangings, decorated with bees. (The bee was a Napoleonic symbol.) These bed hangings were originally made at Alençon in France for the Empress Josephine, consort of the Emperor Napoleon, in about 1809. They are now in the Brooklyn Museum, New York.



In the early 19th century the French lace industry largely depended on bobbin lace and machine-made net. Napoleon supported manufacturers of needle lace by making the wearing of French or Brussels lace compulsory at court.
Collection
Accession Number
3544-1852

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record createdDecember 11, 2003
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