Handmade Belgium Lace Butterfly

Handcrafted lace butterfly. 1/2″ square, meant to be appliqued.

So far I’ve blogged about adventures in Scotland, England, and the Netherlands on my first trip to Europe.   I’m using the charms from a bracelet I assembled as we travelled.  Today we’re in Belgium.

Belgium to me means Brugge. I always loved medieval history and art; Brugge was the first real-life embodiment of it I ever saw. Of course, there were old buildings and monuments in England, but this was a complete town. Streets, canals, court houses. All from the 13th and 14th century. Someone slept in this house in 1322! People I never imagined used hand tools to shape these stones, to build this bridge. They lived 700 years ago, before Christopher Columbus was born.

It’s one thing to read about a time in the past and another thing to step into that time. Brugge is a UNESCO World History site, and with good reason. So what would make a good souvenir?

I learned Belgium is considered the cradle of lacemaking. In a shop a woman was making lace by throwing little wooden bobbins this way and that. (I have since read that lace took the place of embroidery on clothes – it was removeable and thus a woman could keep in fashion by changing her collar. ) In any case, I bought the lace butterfly applique. Mother, also in love with the lace, looked at her three daughters and decided to buy a wedding veil. I believe I was the only one to wear it. All the nieces are now married. I hope a cousin or grandchild or some relative in the future will choose to wear it. I promise it makes you feel like a medieval princess.

And of course, I bought a charm.


  1. I can’t imagine being in a place so old. It must be fascinating to walk where so many people have walked before you. Thanks for sharing your travels!

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