Sunday, May 2, 2010

Needlelace - I've always wanted to do it but found the various instructions I came across confusing. They were almost always from the early to mid-1900's and the photos were black and white or drawings. There were a few online sites with tutorials but to have an ongoing conversation with anyone knowledgeble seemed out of reach.

Recently a new group was started on the Ning community and I joined without hesitation. I didn't really have time to do much more than read the discussions at first but I did decide which pattern I wanted to start with.

And then changed my mind.

After reading all the discussion, I decided I should start with a bookmark sampler. I haven't done much stitching along this line for quite awhile and needed a refresher. As it turns out, all the stuff before you even get to the stitching is important.

The pattern is by Lorelei Terry Halley. There were several to pick from, some by members and some from expired copyright publications. This one seemed good to practice on. I actually ended up couching the trace or outline threads a second time. The first time, I was just going around the outside and thought I would add in the bars later, but then I realized that would add bulk so I moved a single thread inside for the cross bars, which doubles it coming back so I had the 2 threads couched in one move, and then when I came down the other long side, I just pulled the thread through the end of the short bar. Anyway, I hope I did or it will come apart!

Finally I had some time to do some stitching. All of the filling stitches are attached to the outer "trace" threads. The segment at the top is called a "detached buttonhole with straight return, open form". BTW, the buttonhole stitch is the basis of most filling stitches.

The second segment is the Single Brussels stitch, which is basically just a loose buttonhole stitch. As you can see, my tension and spacing is horrid!

Here's another try at the Single Brussels stitch in the 3rd segment. Better...but still crying out for practice! My needle finger is getting tender so I'll have to wait to do anymore.

This was my first choice for a pattern but since I have a use for this in mind, it seemed prudent to practice on something else. I'm anxious to get to the leaf, but I'll be glad I waited.


tatt3r said...

I love watching your progress, Gina! I'm enjoying the challenge of learning needle lace more than other laces I've tried recently. There's a lot to learn!

Isdihara said...

Wow, you have been a busy bee! Needle lace sounds like a huge challenge, but the results are exquisite.

I will be following your progress with an eager eye. Keep up the great work!

umintsuru said...

I have seen tatt3r's pieces of lace she made and was in awe. Delighted to see that you are embarking on this new techinique. Will be visting to see how you progress along.