One of my favorite things when it comes to Ecclesiastical Sewing is working with Linen. Working with linen is like working with a new clean slate. As it rolls of the tube, completely wrinkle free (at least for the moment), with its crisp hand and lovely feel, one quickly gets a sense that this is a special fabric. There is so much to share about this lovely fabric. But for tonight, due to computer update issues, I will only share this lovely photo of a linen amice.
Many of us are familiar with the amice, which is one of the first vestment pieces that a priest puts on when vesting. The amice in the above photo is a little unusual. Notice that is has a lace edging around the sides. While it is difficult to know whether the lace is actually sewn around the edges of the amice, or if it is used for display purposes, when one looks at the care of the tiny pleats in the lace at the corners, and the way the lace follows the linen in the folds, one can not help but to think the lace is attached to the edge of the linen amice.
The next lovely detail is the use of tassels at the ends of the tie ends. This is something which would never be visible, and yet, knowing the tassels would never be seen, they have still been placed at the tie ends.
In the center of the amice, a lovely crest has been embroidered. Sometimes it seems such a sad thing that the work of someone’s hands is meant to remain always out of site.
So who was the recipient of this lovely amice? The caption states the amice was for Pope John Paul II. And now the use of such elaborate detail on what is usually a simple garment makes sense.
This piece serves as an inspiration in that one does not always need to use elaborate and costly fabrics for every liturgical vestment, but what is important is the care and workmanship that goes into the design and construction. Small details do make a difference in the finished garment.
Solo Dei Gloria
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Filed under: Ecclesiastical Sewing Tagged: amice, Ecclesiastical Sewing, Liturgical Vestment, Pope John Paul II