About This Blog

My current research obsession is centered around purses and pouches from the European Middle Ages, and the accompanying hardware and passementerie. It is my hope to not only study extant items but also learn via reconstructive experiments; these will be limited for the most part to the textile components, however in the future I hope to explore the production of the metal frames.

31 December 2008

Purse mock-up, part 2

OK, here's the second half of the side stitching. The tension was much better this time around, although of course the sides of the mouth are slightly different lengths as a result.

I had two goals with the second half: experiment with adding a little ear to aid in opening the purse; and see what I could do about hiding the unfinished end from the first half. I cut off the knot and buried it between the fabric edges. This mostly worked, but was a little sloppy, as the corner was difficult enough on its own.

Another idea I had a while ago, which Rebecca reminded me of, was the fact that these ends could be turned into tassels or covered by knopps of some sort.

30 December 2008

Purse mock-up, part 1

Here's my first attempt at the seam stitching for my purses, and I have Rebecca to thank for the extra two hands. I feel pretty good about it, although I had some tensioning issues when I started resulting in some puckering. I am very happy about this one!

This was actually done yesterday. Rebecca and I finished the second half today. And I will post pictures of that tomorrow.

Fingerloop braids

Working from Tak V Bowes Departed:

From left to right:
A Lace Bend Round (#25), A Broad Lace of 5 Loops (#1), A Broad Lace Chevron (#29), A Thin Lace of 5 Loops (#3), A Lace Endented (#18), A Lace Chain Broad (#27), An Endented Lace (#6), A Round Lace of 5 Loops (#2), A Lace Baston (#4)

25 December 2008

Merry Christmas!

I received my copy of Tak V Bowes Departed this morning! I may try out a braid or two shortly after posting :)

Happy holidays, everyone!
UPDATE (26 Dec): Since posting, I've practiced 'A Broad Lace of 5 Loops' (#1), 'A Condrak Lace Departed' (#10), 'A Thin Lace of 5 Loops' (#3), and 'A Broad Lace Party' (#23). I've found that the Condrak one is quite difficult in terms of tension control, but quite nice looking regardless. Not sure what I'd ever use it for, however.

12 December 2008

A question for all you embroiderers

I've only recently started using silk for my projects. I began buying silk floss from Kreinik (their Silk Mori), in part because it was available (in very limited amounts) in some local craft stores, and later because it was simple to order online. Aside from relative ease of acquisition, their colors seem to be consistent*, meaning that if I ever ran out of a color, I could just order more and not worry about later skeins being slightly "off".

I'm not ready for the jump yet, but I've been thinking about the future of my embroidery. That is, not using your typical (and obviously modern) spun/plied silk. As an example, compare one of the close-up pictures from my previous post with this, or any close-up picture of that German Altar Frontal in the Cloisters (go to Textiles from the Cloisters for some great close-ups).

So, here's my question: Where can one get silks like this? I'm assuming that I'll probably need to dye it myself, but I'd just like to know what's out there. Any suggestions?

*OK, in all honesty, this DID happen to me once. And for a "medieval" project, why bother complaining about it? Nothing wrong with a little inconsistency there.. I'll point this out when that project is done and I have pictures of it.

UPDATE [17 Dec]: Kathy Storm posted (Medieval Arts & Crafts) her opinions on several type of embroidery floss available. Helpful - and with a visual aid! Do check it out.

02 December 2008

Some close-ups...

...of the two embroidered purses I'm currently working on:

Bonus Image! This is me:

01 December 2008

Progress is being made

The picture isn't the best, but you can see that I have, indeed, been working!

Again, for those of you who may be new to reading -- is it egotistical of me to believe that more than a half-dozen people read this thing? :-) -- this is the pattern I redacted from IRPA Obj# 43380.