Sunday afternoon mucking about

I made a very boring shift today, a saxon one for work, which I machined. Once I’d finished though, I thought I’d play for an hour.

Recently a neighbour introduced me to  an interesting new haberdashery shop called Bonds, in Farsley, which is cheap, eccentric, and full of interesting things – many of them old stock of the kind that you just don’t find in more up to date establishments.

 I bought several bundles of this heavy cotton upholstery braid, which was only a pound per bundle – a bundle being about five metres.

It’s been lying around for weeks waiting for me to have time for it. I’m sure there are plenty of people who would use this stuff to trim medieval(ish) costumes, but I’m far too much of an authenticity nazi for that sort of thing, thank you very much. I thought maybe I could make little presies from it.

 First step was to sew the strips into a piece. I started with this browny bit as it’s my least favourite, and since this was all very experimental I wanted to use the one I like least.

This bit actually proved trickier than I’d anticipated. I admit I prefer handsewing, but when I have to use one I’m not exactly terrible with a sewing machine – several years ago I was teaching a Saxon textiles course for teens and had to do a basic machine sewing course because I was going to be working in the sewing machine room of the college(It was a health and safety thing, and pretty pointless as I had no use for the machines) anyway, I came top of the class despite not having used a machine in twenty years. The trouble with this was that theres a very narrow margin down which to sew, and all the while the machine foot tries to separate the two braids. I did try pinning them, despite my utter loathing of ever using pins under any circumstances, but that didn’t help at all. It was made worse by the fact that if you do unintentionally get a slight gap its almost impossible to fix and you have to unpick and start again.

I persevered. There may have been a certain amount of quite naughty language


 Although this turned out pretty much as I had originally envisioned – if a little messy due to me needing to practice zips a bit (not much need for em on medieval costume, you know), I found it somewhat busy.

Also, the braid was so thick it really didn’t turn well on the seams.



 So I tried again, this time using  black linen to enclose a braid panel.

Ok, so the zip is the wrong colour, as I had only bought zips to go with the braids, not having envisioned this particular variation, but I like this version far better and it was easier to turn the linen.

I think I’ll make a few as christmas presents. I also have some slightly more complicated handbag versions I’d like to play with when i get time.


~ by opusanglicanum on September 18, 2011.

2 Responses to “Sunday afternoon mucking about”

  1. Good way to use some pretty braid – tho I can kinda imagine the naughty words! I like the pillow with the backing – would make lovely pressies.

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