I was airing my tiny collection of antique lace which is made up of Belgian and Irish pieces. I inherited the Belgian piece. On one of my return trips to Ireland I met up with a former classmate who took me on an antique lace-finding tour. She herself was a lacemaker and knew all about Irish lace. I found a few pieces, collars, a jabot, beautifully made, substantial and intricate.
The Belgian piece in the photo is extraordinary too. It would have been a "collar" to adorn a dress (it actually looks like part of a national costume); today it would be stitched on the sides and called a shrug!