Femme Thou Art is having an auction and this is my contribution to the topic 'Floral'. It's watercolours, pencil and gold gouache. If you think it looks familiar, that's because...
A lucet is a two pronged tool used for making a square braid that is springy. I’ve seen various reports on when they were used, but most seem to agree that they were used during the Elizabethan period, and the versions with the slightly turned out prongs are considered to be Victorian. There’s also evidence that the lucet in a similar form may have been used as early as the Viking period, though this is speculation as a similar tool has been found, but the Vikings didn’t leave much information about what the tool was used for, so it’s speculation. They were made of wood, wool or ivory, some having straight prongs, some having no handle, others no thread hole.
Lucets are sometimes known as Chain forks, hay forks, lyres, lutals and lyres.
One of the great things about a lucet is that you don’t have to cut your thread/ wool before you start, and it’s very portable. This means you can make braids as long as you want, and pick it up at any point. I have no real idea what I will use the cord for, but it could be used as a purse string, for lacing up a kirtle, tying up hair, or even a belt. You can pretty much use any material, and if the cord is not thick enough, make a cord, then use this as the new lucet ‘string’.
- http://www.et-tu.com/soper/cgi-bin/index.cgi?action=viewnews&id=51 (This one examines possible histories with reference to secondary sources
- http://www.nvg.org.au/documents/vv/vv_issue_65.pdf Section on Viking finds that possibly could have been used as lucets