Bobbin lace production in the Occitan Valleys (Occitan lace) dates back to the second half of the 17th century, when the upper Val Varaita was part of the kingdom of France. The area where this type of lace was traditionally made was centred on the foothills of Mount Monviso. It is currently manufactured mostly in Cuneo and its province, especially the Occitan Valleys. This type of lace was used to make bonnets for traditional women’s costumes. It also decorated men’s costumes used during celebrations, and sometimes altar cloths as well. Bobbin lace from this area is typified by its six-point star ground (point de Paris). The design is made simultaneously with the ground, which is usually knitted, but sometimes made with point à la rose, cross-stitching, point cannage, point d'esprit and other techniques. Designs are often inspired by nature (flowers, shoots, bees, etc.), but geometric designs are frequent as well. They are often bordered by a thick, white, lucid cotton thread (cordonnet). Traditionally, the lace was made directly on the bobbins, with neither preparatory drawings nor cartons piquès. Several workshops were established in the 1920s, including one in Bellino, where these techniques were thought. The workshop trained a group of skilful laceworkers, whose basic techniques were then taken up again in the 1980s by a local attorney named Boschero, who introduced the use of technical drawings. With the help of the Cuneo Civic Museum and of several local laceworkers, he founded the “Pouiéntes d’Oc” association, with the goal of studying Occitan models and teaching their manufacturing.
Another typical lace style in Piedmont, particularly in Valsesia, is known as puncetto valsesiano. It is entirely handmade, using only a needle. It is made using two different knots, known as "andata" and "ritorno"; and depending on design it can be manufactured vertically, diagonally, circularly, etc. Historical evidence of puncetto comes from Gaudenzio Ferrari, Valsesia’s most illustrious artist, who in 1500 decorated the robes of his Virgin Marys with this type of lace.
For quite some time, the puncetto technique remained known only in Valsesia, where it was used to adorn typical costumes or as a part of a bride’s hope chest. Queen Margaret of Savoy, who was quite fond of Valsesia and admired puncetto valsesiano lace, helped promote it abroad, at the court of France and in England. In recent years, thanks to the efforts of the Valsesia Montane Community and of lace aficionados, the art of puncetto has seen a well-deserved revival.