When it was established in 1830, the nation of Belgium encompassed some of the greatest lacemaking regions of Flanders. Thus, it is no surprise that some very fine laces were made as presentation pieces for Belgian royalty. This handkerchief, featuring both needle and bobbin lace, was made on the occasion of the wedding of Leopold, duke of Brabant (later King Leopold II of Belgium), and Marie-Henriette, archduchess of Austria, in 1853. Its design includes the arms of Belgium, the arms of Austria, and the initials L and M, entwined and surmounted by a crown. The point de gaze needle-lace inserts demonstrate an extraordinary mastery of the technique.
Princess Louise, daughter of Leopold II ; I. E. Balogh , 1921; sold to MMA