Lesson #3 – Openwork Circle Design Ornaments

Of the three types of withdrawn-thread patterns (simple, Limet, and openwork) in Schwalm whitework, openwork is the most important and richly diverse group. This is because shapes can not only be filled with endless patterns but also with figured patterns. The variety of figured patterns is vast – in addition to hearts, tulips and stars, birds and manikin are found. However, one can also find other animals and crowns. The Schwalm embroiderer loved diversification and liked to combine all the different possibilities.


Openwork patterns are especially durable because the embroiderer usually embroidered the shape twice – once for securing the grid with Cable stitches and again when working a pattern using Rose or needle-weaving stitches into the established grid. Learning to embroider openwork patterns is a little bit more arduous. But having learned the basic principles, countless and very different creative possibilities are opened up.

linienförmige Anordnung | arrangement in a straight line
The Ornament project is a continuation of the Happel Hearts project. It provides the opportunity to practice Coral Knot, Chain, and Blanket stitches that you learned in lesson #1, and it introduces new techniques and challenges:

1. Design transfer of a circle design
2. Thread withdrawal for an openwork grid with a square in the center
3. Working a Cable stitch grid
4. Openwork filling stitch: needle weaving
5. Working from a filling pattern chart
6. Openwork filling stitch: Rose stitch
7. Finishing
8. Thread withdrawal for an openwork grid with an intersection of bundled threads in the center

In addition, you will
• create your own different edge embellishment in basic star pattern charts,
• create your own star pattern chart,
• study more different pattern charts,
• study more embroidered star patterns.


The main focus of this lesson is to introduce Schwalm whitework’s third type of withdrawn-thread patterns – openwork patterns. (Simple withdrawn-thread filling patterns and Limet-Filling patterns have already been covered in lesson #1 and in lesson #2 respectively.)


In this lesson you have to establish an openwork grid, stabilize it with Cable stitches, and fill it with different figured patterns using needle weaving and Rose stitches. In the end, excess fabric is cut away.

Other finishing possibilities are square ornaments, coasters, and bands.


The project is small, but there is so much to learn!
Everything you need is included in the kit #1. Did you order it already?
To save you shipping costs, I made this document downloadable. Of course, a printed version is available upon request; should you prefer this option, please email me.

Schwalm Whitework
Lesson #3
Openwork Circle Design Ornaments
31 pages
more than100 images
text: English
21.95 MB file size
item price: € 20 (including 19 % sales tax), 16,81 € for customers outside the EU

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Luzine Happel
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E-Mail: leuchtbergverlag@aol.com

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