I ended last month by going to a lovely Lace and Textiles fair hosted by The Devon Lace Teachers, where I (very excitedly) bought my first lace pillow, bobbins, thread, tools and books! Honiton lace has been something I have been wanting to learn for several years now and because of busyness I haven’t got around to starting.
Which has mean that this month, I’ve put aside some of my lovely projects and really get started on my lacemaking journey. I’ve mostly been learning from books and making mistakes as I go along but I really am loving every moment.
I began my journey with every beginner’s first motif – a simple three leaf sprig. The right and central leaf used Whole stitch, though the one to the right has a twisted vine down the centre, then the left leaf uses Half stitch all the way down.
I did make a fair amount of mistakes, but I learnt so much and actually it’s ok to not be perfect on your first try…. especially as I was mainly teaching myself. I was thrilled when I came to the end and had this beautifully fine motif that I made!!
My next make, is also lace-related, although it was a short and sweet sewing project for myself… I noticed that many lacemakers had these really lovely bobbin cases to keep all of their bobbins in order. I too decided I wanted one.
So, I rummaged through my many boxes of fabric to find the perfect piece of material that I could make up my case. There were a couple of options, but this fabric surpassed them all… I bought a good two metres of a beautiful printed cotton with a design of roses and lace in stripes many years ago, planning to make myself a dress and never got around to it! But it was perfect for my bobbin case, and since it was a small project, there is still enough for a dress… at some point! (I really should get onto that!)
I cut and placed the fabric in such a way that would show-off the lace design within the pattern. I created the bobbin case with a double layer of spaces for the bobbins – I don’t need all of them now, but as I get to larger projects (which I most certainly will in the future) then I will need it to be able to hold many more.
It was such a joy to make and I loved the fact that the fabric was perfect in every way – very pretty with roses and lace, but perfect for the layering idea inside and the fact that it was all in tones of blue too. Hontion lacemaking is usually made on a blue pillow with blue cover cloths, so I wanted to continue the colour into my bobbin case as well.
I couldn’t resist starting a second Honiton motif straight after my leaf sprig. I choose a very sweet pattern of a wild rose with leaves – some of the leaves I have already learnt but there is a very beautiful leaf which is Half stitch on the one side and Whole stitch on the other. I’m looking forward to that, though I have started on the roses first.
It is still, very much a working progress but I wanted to share with you where I’ve got up to so far…
There is a new class that will be coming soon, that will be looking at a very unusual technique called Huck Embroidery (also known as Huck Weaving and Swedish Weaving). It’s something I found not long ago and thought it would make a great class for beginners near Christmas (and yes, I’m already planning and preparing for Christmas classes!)
The first two samples was just experimenting with the designs and colours but the last one is going to be as part of a Christmas class…
It is a counted technique of stitching but it’s actually rather calming and a style of embroidery which you could zone out with some music.
For the Christmas class… Christmas trees are so effective in this style! They look so great (even though I say so myself). Although this isn’t the final design that will be used for the project, it will be fairly similar by using a wonderful variety of colours and the same style of trees. But I love how easy it is to create this effect, it’s brilliant and it will be a really good project for every beginner.
Finally, I have started tatting snowflakes for both a class as well as to sell (soon!). I started with cream snowflakes for some reason with a pattern that would have been suitable for intermediates. But I really wanted to provide a beginners tatting class with snowflakes and created these simpler but very effective snowflakes…
I have started making tiny snowflakes in my silky sewing thread (thread size 50) which I am trying out, to potentially sell in the future. So I’m experimenting with a variety of designs… but this is where I’ve managed to get to so far.
Let me know what you have been making and comment below!