The Pauline order from Hungary founded a monastery in Lepoglava in 1400, bringing the skill of making lace to the town. The monks taught rural population the technique of weaving and primarily applied it to the production of white linen clothing and turbans. This became local traditional clothes with distinctive characteristics.
Lepoglava lace experienced its true flowering at the end of the 19th century and in the first half of the 20th century, thanks to the Honorable Zlata Šufflay, who first organized the production of lace and its refinement through the use of folk decoration. Her work was continued with exceptional success by Danica Brossler after the First World War. Through official institutions, she encouraged manufacturing, and for this purpose started lessons, workshops, and schools of lace-making. The skill of lace-making became a constant source of extra earnings, as the lace was sold at markets, exhibits, and at the Zagreb Trade Fair, as well as throughout Western Europe, where the Lepoglava lace won awards at the “World Fairs”: gold medal in 1937 in Paris, and bronze in 1939 in Berlin. This was the period of the greatest flowering of the Lepoglava lace craft. Behind the achievements of Lepoglava’s lace craftsmanship, there is a large group of hardworking women who know how to translate Danica Brossler’s ideas into finished products. Today these lace artworks are called “Ladies’ lace”.
Lepoglava lace is made of very fine cotton or linen threads. The finished product is white or beige, and contains stylized forms of flora, fauna, baroque, and geometric motifs.
Since 1997, Lepoglava has held the International Lace Festival every year. After the registration of Lepoglava Lace as a World Intangible Cultural Heritage in 2009, with the support of UNESCO, the scale of the International Lace Festival has gradually expanded. At the International Lace Festival held on 2019 September 13, more than 16 countries participated in the exhibition.