Spiderweb interleaving

German spiderweb interleaving

I have seen quite a number of photograph albums with this particular kind of spider-web patterned interleaving.  They’re all German and from the first half of the 20th century.  I’m curious as to why this kind of interleaving was so popular, since it seems kind of macabre!  Maybe it’s a reference to the story of Ariadne or other folktales in which the spider is featured as a storyteller.  Or maybe it’s some comment on how the album will “capture” the memories of the owner/creator.  Hmmm.

From a conservation standpoint, I’m slightly concerned about it leaving an imprint on the photographs in the album, but I’ve not seen any actual evidence of this happening.  Also, the spider-web interleaving seems to be of a higher quality than some of the other interleaving I’ve seen in other albums; it’s thicker and hasn’t yellowed at all.