used to describe people who were obsessively concerned about outward appearances; primarily to the detriment of those inside. It came from the practice of hanging beautiful lace curtains so your house looked nice from the street but having torn/broken furniture inside because you were so poor.
My mom grew up in a lace Irish home. Her mother would hang a giant Christmas Wreath on the front door but they would have no gifts... or tree.
by Hambone64 July 15, 2008