Limetrosen I – Improved German Edition and New English Edition


Every time I stitch a pattern, I consider how to rearrange stitches so that a new pattern is created.
This habit began many years ago and was the impetus behind my big sampler (2.70 m X 1.70 m). I began this project in 1996 creating it pattern by pattern. In 1998, having embroidered nearly every day of the intervening years and when my fabric had no remaining space, I finished the sampler.
1_25.03.2017I embroidered only for my own pleasure; coming up with new patterns motivated and empowered me.
2_25.03.2017During this time I did not harbor any thought of publishing the patterns –this came later. At the time I had very little experience with computer text programs. And programs for editing images were absolutely foreign to me. I had to invest a huge amount of time and energy in learning these programs before tackling such a project and bringing it to fruition.
3_25.03.2017Then I had to organize my thoughts and determine how to best present all that I wanted share.
Because I got to know that many embroiderers were not fully able to transform graphics into steps of working, I mostly avoided writing schematic instructions. I realized that step-by-step pictures were needed. Unfortunately, I had not taken step pictures while stitching my sampler – all these had to be made now. When the end of the project was in sight, I found a printer with an acceptable price/quality ratio. And because I had decided to handle sales myself, I had to store at home lots of boxes of books.
4_25.03.2017Since then more than eighteen years have passed. When, a couple months ago, the 1998 version of the book sold out, I thought to be content and not reprint. But requests and inquiries for a new edition induced me at last to tackle the project again – after all the patterns are beautiful and most are unique not to be found in other publications.
5_25.03.2017Working on this project again, I have come to realize that the first edition was not at all optimal. The stitches shown for illustrative purposes were too small. The patterns stitched with white threads were not always clearly recognizable. Also, the instructions were not always clear enough for the embroiderer to reproduce the pattern.
6_25.03.2017So I sat down and embroidered all steps for working again – this time with blue threads for better clarification. More than 2000 step pictures were taken! At all times I had to keep so much in mind:
After which stitch should I stop to take the next picture? Did the needle tip get cropped out of the photograph?
7_25.03.2017Is the background dark for a good contrast, or did the excess linen inadvertently fold behind the open grid?
8_25.03.2017Is the camera held so that the cut-and-withdrawn-thread grid looks perfectly squared? Is there a dark cloud in the sky or is the sun shining too brightly at this moment?
9_25.03.2017Although I always took the pictures during the daytime and used various image editing programs, I could not get all pictures absolutely uniform. Also I learned that although the edited images looked nice on my screen, they often looked different when they were printed. In the end 1032 pictures found a place in my new book.

When the pictures had to be combined with the text, I stopped short of resigning. Why did the pictures not hold the place I gave them? Why did the line distance change automatically? Why was there all at once a typeface I had not chosen? And then my PC crashed, because the document with so many pictures got too big for the random access memory. And, and, and . . .


Pattern pages in comparison – left: page of the first edition, right: of the new edition

But it is not my nature to give up so quickly. If I accept a challenge, by all means I try to rise to it. So, with frustration reduced by many walks in the fresh air, I went on! After many months and countless hours of hard work, the new edition is finished.
The layout has been changed. Useless text was deleted to make room for many step pictures. The text that was kept was deemed the most necessary.
The introduction has been improved: substantially enhanced with more comprehensive text and all explanations illustrated with pictures. addition, two overviews were placed at the front of the publication: large thumbnails of the reduced white embroidered patterns,
12_englisch_25.03.2017and large thumbnails of the blue embroidered examples (most in their original size). These overviews are very valuable because these patterns are not only well suited to whitework or Schwalm whitework but also to other embroidery techniques requiring white or coloured threads to attractively fill shapes.
13_englisch_25.03.2017In addition, there is an overview of the specific pattern sections used throughout the book. The referenced samples are enlarged and in blue. This overview helps in understanding how the individual names came about, but it might also motivate the readers to create their own patterns using the individual sections.

Many embroiderers have asked for an English edition of this book. I am now happy to announce that Limetrosen I – a book filled with unique filling patterns based on the Square Eyelet, an abundance of images, and illustrated instructions is now available.

Limetrosen I
Square Eyelet Filling Patterns
illustrated with step-by-step instructions
81 pages
1032 images
text: English
67 filling patterns
thumbnail overview
plastic comb binding

How to Make a Gift Bag


Wanting to work a small, easy-to-wash, and easy-to-iron bag, I looked for an insert that was the appropriate size, solid, clean, inexpensive, and easy to find. I decided on a milk pack. Cut to the desired length,
1_10-2017it is washed out and painted white.
2_10-2017The box measures 9 cm in the width, 6 cm in the depth, and 12 cm in the height. Linen (16/cm thread count) is cut to measure 19 cm (width + depth + 2 X 1 cm seam allowance + 2 cm extra for shrinking) X 46 cm (2 X high + 3 X depth + 2 X 2 cm seam allowance).
The front side is embroidered with a small design.
The long edges are finished to prevent fraying.
3_10-2017The piece is washed (boiled to shrink), starched, and ironed.
With right sides together, the linen is folded at the middle of the long sides. Out from the vertical center axis, it is measured 7.8 cm (width + 2 x ½ depth + 2 X 3 mm) to each side and marked.
Along the marks, both sides are sewn closed.
4_10-2017The seam allowances are pressed open.
5_10-2017Now the fit is tested to determine if the box fits well into the linen bag. If the bag is too wide, remove the sewing line and resew it a small step inwards. If the bag is too tight, remove the sewing line and resew it a small step outwards. But if measuring was accurate this should not happen.
6_10-2017At the top edge, fold under 1 cm and then fold another 1 cm for the hem; secure it.
7_10-2017Turn the bag inside out, and iron it again. Put the box into the bag, fold the bottom corners in, and press the bottom of the bag.
8_10-2017Also fold the top edges as seen in the picture.
9_10-2017Closed with a clip, it is a nice bag for small gifts – individual and extravagant!
10_10-2017And a further tip: Making the bag taller so that it can be folded, it is suitable for making an Advent calendar: the upper section of the bag is folded over a string and fastened with a clip.

Forks – Practice Exercises (3)


A tendril tree is a suitable small design for practicing forks. The original measures about 5.5 cm x 6.7 cm.
Coton à broder No. 16 is used for Coral Knot stitches. It is worked on 16/cm thread count linen.
Remember, at the point where a tendril will fork off the main stem or shape, make a wider Coral Knot stitch.
After finishing, the embroidered piece is washed (boiled), starched, and ironed.
The result is a nice decoration for manifold uses – quick and easy to embroider. In a future post I will show one of the possible uses – a small gift bag.

Bobbin Lace in the Schwalm (2)


In the article Bobbin Lace in the Schwalm (1) you saw the different garments and linens that included bobbin lace. Now please enjoy a closer look at the different bobbin laces.

The finest and smallest bobbin laces were those found on knitted baby caps.
1_KS_2Four bobbin lace edgings were tightly gathered and sewn at the edges of knitted baby caps.
2_KS_22 cm wide bobbin lace found on a baby cap
3_KS_21.5 cm wide bobbin lace found on a baby cap. It seems that picots were added after finishing the lace.
4_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace with tulips found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm bodice
5_KS_24.5 cm wide bobbin lace with flowers found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm bodice
6-KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace with a free-form pattern found on very old dyed-to-blue Schwalm bodice sleeves
7_KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm bodice for a girl. The bodice was made from linen cambric and finely embroidered. In contrast to the fineness of the fabric and embroidery, the bobbin lace is rather dense.
8_KS_24 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue, and later decolorized, very fine Schwalm bodice from 1849
9_KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace found on dyed-to-blue, and later decolorized, very fine Schwalm bodice sleeves
10_KS_23 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm bodice from 1925
11_KS_24 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm communion cap
12_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm communion cap
13_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm communion cap
14_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm communion cap
15_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm decorative handkerchief
16_KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace found on a dyed-to-blue Schwalm decorative handkerchief
17_KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace found as bands for tying on a pillowcase
18_KS_23.5 cm wide bobbin lace in combination with sprang technique found on a Schwalm bed covering (A)
19_KS_2A second bobbin lace – also 3.5 cm wide – found on the Schwalm bed covering (A)
20_KS_2And a third bobbin lace – 4 cm wide – combined with the sprang technique, found on the Schwalm bed covering (A)
21_KS_2Also interesting here is how the lace band was attached with Plaited Insertion stitch (also known as Interlaced Insertion stitch).
22_KS_25 cm wide bobbin lace found on two edges of a Schwalm bed covering from 1832
23_KS_2Wide bobbin lace bands in combination with needle-weaving bands found on a Schwalm bed covering

There are a wide variety of different types of bobbin lace and bobbin lace patterns used in Schwalm.

Here is a publication that shows even more bobbin lace patterns and provides the matching schematics for working them:
24_KS_2Freihandspitzen in Schwälmer Textilien
Ingrid Hick, Christa Röhr, Marianne Stang

Purchase from:
Forum Alte Spitze GbR
Am Tomberg 18
52531 Übach-Palenberg

Bobbin Lace in the Schwalm (1)


The area in and around Neukirchen, in the Schwalm, was a hotspot for making bobbin lace. So it is not surprising that bobbin lace is found on both different garments and different linens.
As already mentioned in the article Historical Schwalm Whitework and Lace, bobbin lace, in combination with Schwalm whitework, is found at the sleeve cuffs of the blue bodices and at the edges of the dyed-to-blue decorative handkerchiefs.
Bobbin lace is also found on bed coverings, door hangings, and at the front edges of the dyed-toblue communion caps. It is also found on knitted baby caps.

Here are some examples of all these:
1_KS_1Very elaborately embroidered dyed-to-blue bodice sleeve with bobbin lace
2_KS_1Dyed-to-blue decorative handkerchief with whitework and bobbin lace
3_KS_1Parts of two different bed coverings with crowns, openwork pattern bands, needle-weaving bands, and bobbin lace
4_KS_1Pillowcase with bobbin lace as bands for tying
5_KS_1Dyed-to-blue old Schwalm “Ziehhaube” (communion cap) with bobbin lace at the front edge
6_KS_1Knitted baby cap with bobbin lace at the edges
7_KS_1Contemporary Schwalm whitework on a tablecloth with bobbin lace at the edges


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