Irish Crochet And How To Make It
Of all the different kinds of lace known as “Irish” that called “Irish Crochet” is the most durable, serviceable and popular. Learn Irish Crochet today with this popular Irish Crochet ebook.
IRISH CROCHET AND HOW TO MAKE IT
Materials for Working, Explanation of Stitches, Lesson for Beginners, Motifs for Irish Crochet, Background Stitches, Borders, Beadings, Insertions, Medallions, Costume in Irish Crochet, Opera Bag, Rose Doily Suggestions for Gowns and Coats, and Many More!
Of all the different kinds of lace known as “Irish” that called “Irish Crochet” is the most durable, serviceable and popular. It is made in three distinct styles at the present time; one is slightly padded, one is heavily padded, while a third has no padding. The heavily padded lace is considered the most valuable and is well worth the extra time and trouble spent on it, as it is practically everlasting. Irish crochet has this advantage also over every other kind of hand-made lace, that it can be taken to pieces, altered into new shapes, as fashion dictates, and any motif that gets worn out can be replaced at will by a new one.
The best lace is always firmly and evenly worked, and it is fresh and clean when it comes from the worker’s hands. Much of the lace offered for sale, some of which scarcely deserves the name of lace, has been washed and starched to give it an appearance of firmness which in itself it does not possess. It is very difficult for two workers to make motifs exactly alike from the same written directions. A slight difference in the size of the hook or in the tightness of the work would alter the size of the motif; while the tightening or loosening of a padding cord might alter the entire sweep of the leaflets. For this reason the directions for a sprig may be carefully followed by two workers, and yet the two may turn out quite different results. One worker will make a very common-place leaf, while the other, with more artistic feeling, may give to the leaf those subtle touches, by means of the cord, which make it a real work of art.
When a sprig shows signs of either getting saucer-shaped or of frilling, when it should lie flat, the worker must use her own discretion as to increasing or diminishing the number of stitches, in order to bring about the desired result. The aim of the worker should be to produce the most artistic work she is capable of; therefore if by altering a curve, or by adding a leaflet to any sprig, she would make a design more pleasing to herself, she should not for one moment hesitate to follow her artistic instinct. It is the power to do this, which makes Irish crochet so very fascinating. Now it is this very freedom, so fascinating to the worker, which creates such difficulties to a writer upon Irish crochet. Even with the same worker a design may work out with slight differences each time it is repeated if it is one which depends much upon the cord for its shaping.
When this is so the fillings of bars must differ also in each case, or they will not lie flat between these most uncertain little sprigs, and to follow directions for a given number of bars composed of a given number of stitches, would be fatal to the beauty of the lace, as no two workers would space alike. In Ireland, where the lace is so extensively done, no directions are ever given for the background, because if minute directions for fillings could be written, they would be so extremely intricate that to attempt to follow them would drive most workers distracted. The easiest plan, and the one which we shall adopt, is to teach the general plan of each filling and leave the worker to practice it until she becomes familiar with it.
There are two threads, as it were, used in working this lace. One is the working thread, which is used to make the stitches; the other thread, or cord, is only used to work over, which gives this lace the rich effect so different from ordinary crochet work. This cord is sometimes held close to the work and the stitches are made over it into the row of stitches made before, (working only in the back loops) or the stitches are worked over it alone, using it as a foundation. In making Irish crochet the stitches should be uniform, close and compact; loose or ragged crochet makes inferior lace, wanting in crispness, and the padding cord should never show through the work. It is necessary in a book of this nature to remember the beginner in lace making as well as the experienced worker, and in consequence we have given detailed instructions for making the simplest as well as the most intricate designs, hoping the collection will be welcome to all lovers of crochet.
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