Over the last few months I have been discovering how easy it is to create my own lace. Obviously there are many types of lace, and many of them are known by the name of the region in which they originated. Free standing lace designs have been available but these are not my favourite as they are too dense and heavy for my liking. I prefer something floaty and delicate.
So exactly what is lace? It is defined as a web like fabric which is constructed by looping, twisting and knitting, made either by hand or machine.
I have studied many types of lace and they fall into several categories, bobbin, needle, tape, crotchet and machine made lace. Even listing their names takes you all over the world as many are named after the region from which they originated. Until I investigated I had never heard of Beggars lace, Coggeshall lace and Moynalty lace, but maybe you haven’t either! While in Malta I discovered Maltese lace, a type of bobbin lace, which always contains a 8 pointed Maltese cross.
I prefer the delicate laces like Vandyke, Nottingham and Honiton lace. Today we can make something similar in a short time compared with the hours it took to make lace in the past. This is so exciting and enables lace to made to our own specifications.
This is one of the designs from the Royal Heirloom collection embroidered out on lace.
The designs in the Rachel Kathryn collection also stitch out perfectly on tulle, so they are perfect for creating lace too! Why not try out Rachel Kathryn 4, design #3 shown below for some lace to use as an insert?
When I was digitising my new collection, Bundle of Joy, I did not have lace in mind at all, but I tested the designs out and discovered that they are perfect for tulle. Use a wash away stabiliser to create your own lace but do hoop the tulle and the stabiliser together. I think you will be surprised at what you can achieve. The designs look slightly different because the stitches do not have the support of ordinary fabric.
I have even managed to create cut work with the hearts in the lace designs instead of giving them applique treatment.
After the embroidery is finished I carefully remove all the jump stitches and tidy up the back before washing away the stabiliser, as it protects the tulle which can easily be snipped inadvertently. This is very important. Below you can see the other design elements from Bundle of Joy which can be used for lace edging. There are more to follow in the fourth and fifth sets.
You may remember that the designs from Regency Whispers, which was inspired by the lace collars that Vandyke was famous for. These also stitch out successfully on tulle and cotton lace. All this begs the question, “What other designs are suitable for making lace?”
A while back I embroidered out some designs from the Graceful Jasmines collection on tulle. However I must confess that I have not as yet washed away the stabiliser but the embroidery looks good, because the designs are light. These designs would be great for bridal veils. Just be careful of dense designs which may distort the tulle.
I would imagine that the Bridal designs from Days of Grace and Dainty Vines could be embroidered on tulle and net, but obviously the designs in Bridal Lace 1 and 2 should be considered too. My list of ideas is growing and I can see that there are other possibilities for creating lace with many of the heirloom designs at Graceful Embroidery. You really never know what you can achieve, until you try it out. It is getting harder and harder to source the perfect lace some times for a project so maybe this is an alternative.
The Bundle of Joy 3 has now been released. So my challenge is to create something special with these designs which contains some lace.
Happy embroidering from Hazel