The Smithsonian Women’s Committee granted the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Library an award in 2012-13 for the preservation and re-housing of two important and rare embroidery and lace manuals dating from the early 17th and late 18th century. Due to their poor and fragile condition, they could not be handled and would have continued to deteriorate if left untreated.
With over 40 volumes detailing the intricacies of lace collection and creation, the Cultural Heritage Library’s Lace Collection covers a lot of ground. About half of the collection is in English, with titles like Directions for Making Poncetto Lace among the most popular. Downloaded 400 times since being digitized, this title offers instruction in the titular Italian knotted lace technique, complete with several patterns to follow.