When searching for an artist to create an Eastlake lace pattern, Dan Cooper of Cooper’s Cottage Lace went immediately to the legendary Steve Bauer of Bradbury & Bradbury wallpapers to help him design authentic Victorian style lace.
“Bradbury & Bradbury have long been the preeminent resource for Victorian and Arts & Crafts wallpaper, so they seemed the natural choice for this project,” Cooper explains. “Steve Bauer has drawn the great Bradbury wallpapers. “Each time I look at one, I still see some wonderful little detail that I hadn’t noticed before. When I decided that my company had to extend its line into the Eastlake style, he was the first person I called.”
Bauer was delighted at the challenge and produced what has become known as the Eastlake Panel. It is meant to coordinate not only with Bradbury’s many wallpaper room-sets but also to complement the home of any lover of Victorian style.
As the company’s website explains, “From the very eclectic world of Victorian Eastlake ornament comes this pattern inspired by an 1880s design. Combining Gothic and Japanesque influences, it would be a rich addition to any Aesthetic Movement interior or eclectic decorating scheme.”
Once the design work was completed, Cooper’s Cottage Lace then commissioned the 100% cotton lace panels to be woven in Scotland on the only Madras-style looms still in production. Madras is a premium grade of lace that applies the pattern over a layer of cotton scrim. The result is a deeply textured lace that is crisper and richer in appearance than the more common Nottingham variety.
“The Eastlake Panel offers a wonderful combination of privacy, yet allows dappled light into one’s home,” Cooper says. “Most notable is the alternating use of stylized chrysanthemums and angular motifs that instantly hallmark this distinctive pattern as from the 1870-1880 eras. No other lace pattern available summons up the styles of this time. They tend to gravitate toward the turn of the century and are more open and Colonial Revival in feel. There’s nothing Colonial about this one!
Cooper continues: “Our very first customer for this pattern is the proud owner of an amazing Victorian house in San Francisco. He has a breathtaking collection of mid-to-late Victorian furnishings, and these panels worked brilliantly with his Eastlake dining room. The interesting thing is that we’ve used this curtain panel in Arts & Crafts interiors and it works quite well there, too. It has a rectilinearity that responds well to Craftsman furnishings.”
To learn about how to hang lace curtains to achieve authentic Victorian style, see our next posts.
by Benjamin Waugh