30 November 2012

My Birgitta cap, the part that went pear-shaped

First run of looped threads
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.

Second run of looped threads
Originally uploaded by Catrijn.
The first of the looped interlacing threads actually went pretty smoothly. Once I got the right pattern of over-under memorized, it worked up well and looked fairly good.

The second of the looped interlacing threads is another story entirely. The photo doesn't quite capture it (I'd need a dedicated macro lens set up), but the truth is that my eyes can't quite capture it - even my incredibly-nearsighted-when-uncorrected eyes have trouble seeing the details for this. It's incredibly hard to work, and the results... well I don't think they look as good as what I started with.

A lot of the problem is scale. The gap between the fabric edges where I'm working is down to barely 5mm - and the original was twice that! (8-12mm). I started with a > 10 mm gap between the two sides, but every set of stitches seems to pull it closer, whether I mean to or not. It might still be workable with a finer thread, but there's just not enough room for the one that I'm using (although I think it is a very appropriate weight for this type of work). There are smaller problems - waxing the thread to prevent it fuzzing out as I rework the same areas might have been helpful.

At this point I'm not sure what I'm going to do with this. I figured out how to manage well enough that I could probably keep going and finish it. I'm also tempted to cut the whole thing out and start over from scratch. The two seem about equally appealing (which is to say: Not At All).


opusanglicanum said...

I've never done anything like that, but maybe it would help to pin it to a board and then sew? Or will it pop back to the right size if you block it over a poly head once you're finished?

too narrow doesn't sound like the end of the world though

Catrijn vanden Westhende said...

Pinning or basting it down more thoroughly to something firmer would have helped, and I'll definitely do that if I try it again. I don't think I'll be able to block it wider, since I really can't produce much change pulling on it while dry. The linen might stretch a little while wet, though. Hmmm.

The problem with the narrowness, at this point, is that is no longer wide enough to really fit the lace design that is meant to go in it, so the work is really tight and difficult to see and work with.