Friday, October 15, 2010
Know When to Fold 'em
Making bobbin lace is my hobby. I like it because the tools are minimal and the bobbins are pretty. :) Making lace is about as slow as slow cloth can be - barring perhaps tapestry.
I do it as a passtime and for relaxation.
Before I take my blood pressure I'm supposed to sit quietly for 20 minutes so recently I pulled out my lace pillow and have been puttering away making a little lace. (All my lace supplies got packed away last spring while Doug re-did the floors and I've only just dug them out again.)
Unfortunately when I pulled my pillow out last week, I couldn't find my stash of lace yarns or my prettiest bobbins so I made do with my student bobbins and some 80's cotton a friend gave me that I found in the same box.
Now 80's cotton is very, very fine stuff. Think 2/80's. Think 33,600 yards per pound. Approximately. Tiny, in other words.
The pricking I chose was one I'd done several times and enjoyed working. It makes a very nice pattern in the centre with plain weave fans.
Imagine my dismay when I got to the 3rd centre motif and ran afoul of a combination of things - teensy tiny pale green thread nearly invisible against the white background of the pricking, plus trying to see where to set the pins in the forest of pins already in place.
And this was an activity intended to lower my bp, not raise it!
After three attempts to weave the centre, unweave it, start again, etc., I asked myself why I was continuing.
The investment so far: Let's be generous and say 50 cents worth of materials. Three hours of winding bobbins and getting to the current state of affairs (about on hour of that unweaving and weaving again). Frustration level - much too high.
This morning I cut the bobbins from the scrap of textile and stripped them. Took a larger version of the pricking and pinned it to my pillow. Perhaps tomorrow morning I'll wind a 2/20 merc. cotton in red (so I can actually see the threads) and begin again. Since I found my pretty bobbins and my stash of threads I have a lot more options now. :)
Currently reading In the Shadow of Death by Gwendolyn Southin