Museo del Merletto

Museum in Murano, Burano & the Northern Islands

Burano's Lace Museum tells the story of a craft that cut across social boundaries, endured for centuries and evoked the epitome of sophistication reached during the Republic's heyday. Lace-making was both a creative expression and a highly lucrative craft, although the skill was nearly lost several times as handmade lace went in and out of fashion.

Enter the exhibition downstairs with a video detailing the early origins of lace-making and its geographical spread from northern France to Bohemia, Malta and Turkey. Upstairs, rooms cover the major developments from the 16th to the 20th century. Pattern books, journals, paintings, furniture, costumes and an extensive collection of samples place the evolving art in its historical context.

In one of the rooms, a group of local lacemakers often sit tatting and gossiping beneath pictures of the Lace School (where many of them learnt their craft), which was located here from 1872 to 1970. Don’t be shy to ask questions about their work.