How to make bobbin lace

Bobbin lace is a type of handmade lace that consists of interlocking threads that are wound onto bobbins for better handling.

Bobbin lace is a type of artisanal and traditional lace making. This is an art that never goes out of style and continues to grow year after year.. Whether you practice it or not, it is very interesting and useful to see how it works. And it is precisely the technique passed down from mother to daughters that, when properly preserved, confirms that this type of lace will continue in time and will not go out of use.

The best part is that in many cities in Spain, such as Almagro, Catalunya or Camariñas, whooping meetings are held where you can see the work of lacemakers and, in addition, buy their works of art. Below is all the information you need to know the bobbin lace technique well:

What is bobbin lace?

This is a textile lace technique that consists of interlacing threads that are wound onto bobbins for better processing. As you work, the fabric is held in place by pins stuck into a pad, also known as a moundillo, which has a pattern of holes, usually made of cardboard, also called picado, i.e. what guides the design that there will be lace.

History of whooping lace

It was between 1500 and 1700 that many different types of lace were invented. It didn’t take long for automatic embroidery machines to appear. when it was designed by John Heathcote in 1806.

Bobbin lace is a type of traditional craft lace.Bobbin lace is a type of traditional craft lace.

This device served incentive for artisans so that they could develop more complex designs that machines could not implement, lest they lose their jobs and be replaced by these devices. However, this was of little use, since Mechanization resulted in many workers losing their jobs.

Currently this task is to make bobbin lace It has become popular again and is considered a hobby.. In addition, it serves to bring together those people who love lace, as they meet and work together, interacting and talking, which is very good for socialization.

Between 1500 and 1700, a wide variety of laces were invented.Between 1500 and 1700, a wide variety of laces were invented.

In countries such as England, Belgium, Spain and France, where this industry was once very important, There are still many lacemakers who demonstrate their art and sell their products., although it’s true that it’s no longer possible to sell the way it was done before. Previously, these products were mainly purchased by the richest nobility, but now these things are bought by curious tourists.

Most Popular Lace Styles

As we know, there are a wide variety of lace styles, but most famous or popular everywhere there is:

  • Torchon style: Its fame stems from the beautiful meshes of this lace, often geometric.
  • Honiton style: This is a very delicate variety from England with many flowers.
  • Cluny style: This is a very delicate lace due to its lightness. It has braids, flowers and lace, which are very small bows made of thread.
  • Bedfordshire: This fabric has a pattern with lines that depict waves and lace, making it difficult for machines to copy.
  • Buckinghamshire Bucks Point: This is a very intertwined lace due to its characteristic grid of hexagons, which is commonly found in children who are lame, i.e. thicker thread is woven for more emphasis.
  • Elements of whooping lace

    The main elements and materials for making lace are:

    • Pillow: This is the most important element because this is where we will work. We can put this part on a stand or a special stand for this task, which will be a better option as it works much easier. Also, also we can lean it against the wall or on the table.
    • Bolillo: These are the wooden tools with which we will make the lace itself. The thread will be wound on top, which is the thinnest. It is necessary to use two bobbins that serve as a pair.
    • Bobbin separators: They will be your great allies and are used to separate bunches of bobbins what worries you when doing work. Don’t worry about the size because there is a lot of variety.
    • Pins: The best ones are those with glass heads because they are ideal for ends and for more rounded work. For the rest of the work, regular pins will be used.
    • Strands: Pieces of thread, usually short, that are threaded through a needle for sewing or embroidery.
    • Thimbles: It is a tool used in sewing which is used to push the needle while making a stitch. This is a small cup that you place in one of the fingers of your hand. usually in the ring finger or heart and is used to apply pressure to the needle during sewing.
    • Drawing: This is the pattern we will follow with the threads to ultimately achieve the lace shape.
    • Pocket: Also known as small fabric bag where does the lacemaker keep her bobbins?
    • Sawdust pincushion: A tool used to insert pins and keep them handy.
    • Themes: For bobbin lace, you can use thin or thick threads of white, black or any other color, although white is the most typical. In past, This technique has been implemented with other materials. such as silk, linen or wool until cotton was no longer used. However, there is also the possibility of using threads, wires and other threads made of precious metals, even with a wide variety of synthetic fibers.
    The fabric is secured with pins attached to the pad.The fabric is secured with pins attached to the pad.

    Besides all this, You will also need pickers, dudir, needle manipulators, pins… And while it may seem like a lot of tools to get the job done, it’s worth having all this material to achieve a professional job that’s worthy of admiration.

    Finally, among the projects that can be done, There are woven fabrics, lace fabrics, plaid fabrics, printed fabrics or mesh fabrics.. However, not all types of bobbin lace include these elements.

    Types of bobbins

    As we said earlier, bobbins are needed to make bobbin lace, and there are a great variety of them. First of all, it would be Catalan bolilloa variety of bolillo, known for several centuries and which can be found without problems in any specialized store. The best are boxwoods.

    There are a wide variety of types of bobbins for making lace.There are a wide variety of types of bobbins for making lace.

    On the other hand, there is also Galician bolillo, which is different from Catalan. In this case, it is thicker than the previous ones and a centimeter shorter. The best Galician bolillos are also made from boxwood.

    Finally, You can purchase handmade bobbins from different types of wood, such as oak, sapele, walnut or mobile.. Despite this, there are many more types and patterns within each wood. All that remains is to get to work and do a lot of work.

    Almagro, the iconic city of bobbin lace

    Bobbin lace provides outstanding evidence of the survival of folk arts and crafts., forming a representative of a tradition that remains practically in its original context. Although they came from areas of Europe differing in customs and languages, these delicate and elegant examples They are part of the lifestyle of the people of La Mancha..

    With this technique you can create items such as tablecloths or pillows.With this technique you can create items such as tablecloths or pillows.

    For this reason, bobbin lace is one of the traditional crafts of Almagro, a city in Ciudad Real declared a Historical Artistic Monument of great charm and history, as well as a distinctive feature. introduced in the 16th century due to the influence of the Foucares..

    In 1766, production was streamlined and organized thanks to businessman Manuel Fernandez and his wife, who employed more than 140 women. During this time, Almagro lace has become one of the most famous in Spain, one of the best in the world. and directing part of its products for export to other countries.

    For this reason, bobbin lace is widespread in this municipality of La Mancha. As soon as you enter Almagro, you will see a roundabout with a statue of a woman making lace, an iconic symbol of the city. In addition, in the Plaza Mayor In the city you can find several shops where you can immerse yourself in this unique tradition. and where you can enjoy all kinds of items made using this technique: tablecloths, pillows, umbrellas, necklaces, bracelets, blankets, curtains… Surely you will not be able to avoid the temptation to take a souvenir home.

    Bobbin lace is an outstanding testament to the survival of folk arts and crafts.Bobbin lace is an outstanding testament to the survival of folk arts and crafts.

    Although it’s true that This artisanal manual activity has sunk into oblivion. and abandoned, Almagro continues to try to maintain and promote this tradition throughout the year, holding lace courses, national lace meetups, and events and exhibitions at the Almagro Lace and Blonde Museum. Also June 14th every year Lace Day is celebrated.

    Despite this, whooping lace This is an additional contribution of income to the family it is estimated that in Almagro and its surroundings there are over 9,000 women involved in lace making.

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