viennabelle: (Girl Reporter)
I'm taking a bit of time off sewing to get ready to head to New England on Thursday to work on the Plimoth Plantation jacket project. I'm far behind schedule completing the sampler required for participating on the project, so I'm pressing to finish it this weekend. I'm not happy with my stitching on the embroidery stitches, so I'm expecting that I won't be doing that (I'm figuring I'll do the easier job of sewing on paillettes). However, I do hope I can learn what I'm doing wrong with the stitches (especially the spiral, which I've redone many, many times).

Oh, well, phooey.

I also purchased a lace sample kit, even though the actual lace for the project was done. I have gone through phases of lacemaking in the past and I've wanted to try 16th century techniques. So, for the first time in years, I pulled out a lace pillow and started hacking my way through the pattern. While I found the directions a bit confusing, it's a fairly simple pattern and the techniques came back to me rapidly as I started playing with my bobbins.

My experience with bobbin lacemaking is one of the strangest experiences. It's a totally intiutive experience--I don't think I could explain much of how I do it.  I can follow patterns, but I don't understand how those women in the lace guild can just look at a pricking (a diagram showing pin configuration) and know immediately how many bobbins to use, where to start and what options they have for execution). I expect that comes with experience, but getting my brain around that essential part of the craft is totally baffling to me. Still, I was pretty happy I could figure my way through this simple pattern.

The kit actually calls for making a sample using gold and silver threads and paillettes (provided). Since I wasn't confident about remembering my skills, I did a test run using linen and other paillettes I had around the house. I was pretty happy with the result, though I will have to work at this new way of making picots (they are all there, but they tend to twist oddly). However, I cannot say if I will use the kit materials--I'm not sure if they really want more samples, since the jacket project lace is completed--and given my druthers, I'd like to work on some lace I could use for a costuming project.

Anyhow, the effort left me remembering how lacemaking is a perfect filler project. Once a pattern is set up, it's a perfect little occupation for doing while watching tv--rather like knitting, but with prettier results.


viennabelle: (Default)

March 2013

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