Schwalm Needlelace – Easily Embroidered


Many totally different Schwalm needlelace edge decorations have already been shown in many blog posts: the simple needlelace scallops stacked in the shape of a pyramid,
nadelspitze_1needlelace pyramids, and
nadelspitze_2multirow simple needlelace scallops with pyramids inside and outlined with connected picots.
nadelspitze_3Also presented was needlelace made in a double row of scallops: Two scallops were stitched side by side; a third scallop was stitched on top of the two to connect them, and a fourth scallop, which was additionally decorated with picots, spans over the trio.
nadelspitze_4Readers of my blog also saw this edging: Three rows of bound double scallops as well as one row of single scallops decorate the sleeve cuff of a traditional Schwalm bodice.
nadelspitze_5And needlelace was also seen worked on the bottom edge of a lampshade. The needlelace was made in an inverted pyramid shape (3-2-1). A row of picots borders the outside edges of the pyramids and binds them together.
nadelspitze_6And one of the blog’s many projects, a small lavender bag, featured a single row of simple needlelace scallops on its edge.
nadelspitze_7Below are two more examples of needlelace edgings: Three rows of simple needlelace scallops with pyramids inside and outlined with connected picots decorate a traditional Schwalm bodice (C).
nadelspitze_8And four-tier scallop pyramids outlined with Bullion Knot picots finish the especially beautiful contemporary Schwalm table cloth.
nadelspitze_9This selection gives you only a small glimpse into the variety of needlelace edge decorations common in the Schwalm. The booklet also includes many needlelace edgings from different centuries, including some rare examples. By combining single elements of the edgings many more needlelace patterns can be established. Unfortunately, many embroiderers shy away from working needlelace – the edgings are really very easy to embroider if one has good instructions at hand.

Here is the guidance you’ve been looking for! In this downloadable file, you will get 51 pages that include more than 200 pictures and instructions for working all the most popular Schwalm needlelace edgings. Of course, the edgings are described in great detail and illustrated with step-bystep instructions. After an introduction into the subject, needlelace scallops, needlelace pyramids, and picots are explained. Below is the table of contents:

Simple Buttonhole stitch scallops including basic layout and working notes
Double Buttonhole stitch scallops
Multirow Buttonhole stitch scallops
Simple Buttonhole stitch scallops stacked in the shape of a pyramid
Simple Blanket stitch pyramid
Supported Blanket stitch pyramid
Supported Buttonhole stitch pyramid
Wrapped Buttonhole stitch pyramid
Simple Buttonhole stitch pyramid
Pyramid inside scallops
Picots made with Bullion Knots
Picots made with Buttonhole or Blanket stitches – also called connected picots

51 pages
211 images
21,5 MB file size
text: English
25.00 EUR
download here

Of course it is also possible to get this publication as a printed booklet for the same price (25.00 EUR) plus shipping charges. This option is not shown in my online shop, so please email me with your request.

Pretty Contemporary Schwalm Table Cloth


An especially beautiful and elaborately embroidered round table cloth is the subject of this post.
The Anna Elisabeth Grein design, with its large motifs, provides areas that are perfect for the bestof-the-best traditional filling patterns.
her_1The small table cloth has a diameter of 60 cm (excluding the needlelace edging) and was worked on 16–18/cm thread count old handwoven linen. The needlelace edging was made with four-tier scallop pyramids outlined with Bullion Knot picots.
her_2Very special to this post is that I photographed the filling patterns before laundering the piece. This makes the details of the stitches extremely easy to see.
her_3In the tulip above, a combination of filling pattern No. 447 and Double Back stitches (images 1–12) was worked.
Also, inside the circle shape, another already described filling pattern, No. 473, was worked.
her_4It is going beyond the scope of a blog post to explain all the filling patterns in detail. So, I shall let the pictures speak for themselves. Enjoy a close and careful look.

Narrow Plait Wreath Doily


The design, with a diameter of 18 cm, is transferred to the fabric. The linen used has a 16/cm thread count. (If you are interested in getting the design, please email me – there is a small fee.)

The lines are covered with Coral Knot stitches using coton à broder No. 20.
flechtkranz_1Please, on the back side of the piece, do not span the threads across intersections; rather, secure them. Threads carried across intersections will, in the end, be visible and distract from the overall charm of the finished doily.
flechtkranz_2Using coton à broder No. 20, Chain stitches are worked a small distance from the Coral Knot stitches at the outside edge.
flechtkranz_3The Chain stitches are covered with densely worked Blanket stitches, also using coton à broder No. 20.
flechtkranz_4Using coton à broder No. 30, the small areas between the lines are outlined with Chain stitches.
flechtkranz_5Inside these small areas, threads are withdrawn to establish an openwork grid.
flechtkranz_6Cable stitches are worked into the grids using coton à broder No. 30. In each grid, the stitch should always run in the same direction.
flechtkranz_7The finished embroidery was boiled, starched, and ironed.
flechtkranz_8Then the piece was trimmed.
flechtkranz_9The result is a sweet little doily. The same design can be used to make doilies of differing sizes. In addition, variations are possible.
flechtkranz_10Years ago I worked a tea cloth with a similar design; it was rectangular, and I added a blue line of Chain stitches inside the double lines of the plait.
flechtkranz_11It looks so elegant displayed on a cloth of a matching colour.
flechtkranz_12And with matching dishes and table napkins, it always garners admiration and compliments from guests.

Traditional Schwalm Bodice (C) Embroidery


The traditional embroidery of the Schwalm bodice (C) is not as elabotae as the borders of the Schwalm bodice (A) and the Schwalm bodice (B). The linen used has a 21–24/cm thread count. The picture shows the entire border in a photomontage.
mieder_c_1The space between needlelace and needle-weaving band has a width of about 7 cm. The space is not entirely filled with a design border.
mieder_c_2A seven-unit A-pattern was worked as a needle-weaving band. For more information about needleweaving bands – the different kinds and the different ways of working – please look to my book Fancy Hems.
mieder_c_3The bottom edge of the sleeve cuff has a needlelace edging of three rows of pyramids inside single scallops with connected picots outlining the needlelace border.
Between the needle-weaving band and the needlelace, a strip of linen remains unembroidered, and a band was embroidered with Schwalm whitework. If you look closely, you will see you many tendrils between the motifs.
mieder_c_4The tulip was outlined with 2 short-2 long embellishment. The shape was filled with an openwork pattern (cut 2, leave 2) with a Cable stitch grid. Into the grid a needle weaving pattern was worked.
mieder_c_5The circle was outlined with knife points with Blanket stitches. The shape was filled with an openwork pattern (cut 2, leave 2) with a Cable stitch grid. Into the grid a needle weaving star pattern was worked. It is notable, that thick thread was used for the needle weaving and that the squares of the grid were not filled very well.

The star pattern is also suitable to work an other ornament for trimming the tree.
mieder_c_6The heart was outlined with Blanket stitch half-eyelet scallops.
The shape was filled with a Limet filling pattern with Satin stitch bars worked in a stair-step manner. It is noticable, that the center of all patterns is not worked mirrored. Whereas the both small leaves on bottom of the heart are worked mirrored. They are filled with an openwork pattern without a Cable stitch grid. Rose stitches were worked into the shapes. The spaces between the motifs were densely filled.

Tendrils – Practice Exercises (3)


One can practice stitching tendrils not only through abstract designs but also concrete or representational designs. The artist Gudrun Hartwig designed two different butterfly motifs especially for these practice exercises.

I chose a design size of 7.5 cm X 7.5 cm for decorating another pincushion.
spir3_1To work the double spirals, I began stitching at the turning point of each spiral to work one section first.
spir3_2Turning the piece, I then worked the remaining sections, up from the finished sections, toward their centers.
spir3_3The piece is washed – please wash gently so that the fabric edges do not fray – starched, and ironed.
After ironing – to iron I laid a dry towel on the ironing board and placed the embroidery right side down onto the towel – the lines emerge especially beautiful.
spir3_4Then, the piece is sewn, filled, and secured.
Another nice little pincushion is finished. But what does one do with all the pincushions? Here they are displayed on a tray; perhaps seasonal decorations or items matching the motif could be added.
For example I displayed the pincushion of the second practice exercise with some blue accessories, because the design makes me think of water and waves.
spir3_5Moving the butterfly pincushion to the focus of the display, I decided to add some flowers.
spir3_6The possibilities are endless – let your imagination run wild! At all events the tray with the pincushions is an eye-catcher enticing visitors to have a closer look and to discuss.

And for embroiderers having fun working representational double spirals, here is one more design:
spir3_7Both the artist’s hand-drawn renditions and the cleaner computer graphics are presented here. It is a matter of taste which to use – I chose to work from the original.


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