Lace

Freestanding Lace

Apply this technique to any freestanding lace design - bookmarks, ornaments, ornament covers - any design that is digitized for freestanding lace embroidery.

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Begin by hooping one piece of  water soluble stabilizer (wss).

We use Ultra Solvy - a heavy weight wss produced by Sulky. Hoop the stabilizer tightly, and make sure that the stabilizer is not stretched.

Because freestanding lace is two-sided, you'll want your bobbin thread to match your top thread.

Wind a bobbin with the same thread that you use on top. The freestanding lace designs from the Embroidery Library are digitized for 40 weight rayon thread.

Embroider the design. We use a size 11 sharp needle when stitching freestanding lace; other types or larger gauges of needles can cause the WSS to tear.

After you've finished embroidering the design, trim the excess stabilizer away.

Soak in water, hot from the tap, for about 15 minutes, or until the stabilizer is soaked away.

Blot dry with a towel, and then allow to dry. Press with an iron.

Beautiful freestanding lace is the result!


A note about water-soluble stabilizers and needles:

There are many, many different brands of water-soluble stabilizer available. Some are thin and light, some are fibrous, and some are thick and heavy. It can be confusing to pick the right one for your lace project.

We've digitized and stitched thousands of freestanding lace designs, and have consistently excellent results with Sulky Ultra Solvy (the heavy weight water-soluble stabilizer by Sulky) and Vilene, a fibrous water-soluble stabilizer. We order Vilene from www.pointetopointe.com.

Use a sharp needle (as opposed to an embroidery needle) when embroidering onto water-soluble stabilizer - especially if using the "plastic-looking" kind (such as Sulky Ultra Solvy). An embroidery needle has a larger point, which makes larger holes in the water-soluble stabilizer, leading to tearing and misalignment.


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