I am languishing in the land of linens… help!
Actually I love making sacred linens but I’m back with the callouses on my stitching fingers because of it. I’m delighted that someone has asked for Irish linen for their new altar linens, and hand sewn at that! But boy oh boy, my poor wee fingers, I must be getting old or something… 😉
I don’t really think about the steps which go into the proper construction any more as I’ve been doing it for so long but it did dawn on me that it’s rather a lot of work! Selecting the linen, calculating the required amount plus allowing for shrinkage. Cutting it from the bolt and then washing it and drying and then pressing it – what a production that is!
Then comes the layout, drawing threads and marking where to cut. Then marking hems and turns, setting the corners. I like to mitre all my linens although sometimes I’m struck with a notion to change it up a bit and make square corners – depending on what we’re doing that can look better.
Then stitching those corners and turning everything out, pinning the linen ready for stitching with the right thread and needle!!
I admit, it is true, I have too many needles. In my defense, not every job can be done with the same needle… really!
Anyway I have been playing around with the selection of hand sewing needles for these new linens. It only took me about three goes to settle upon one I liked. I’m still at the beginning end of this, working on sewing the fourth of eight custom sized corporals – twenty one inches square. Lovely. I’m starting to think about the embroidery, that’s a little ways away yet…
The above picture is quite zoomed in, can you see the hand stitching? Not really? Good!
Here’s a machine stitched corporal for comparison. This is still a very good quality altar linen but when you want the best, you want the best!
Sore fingers and all the time it takes being part of the deal!
Thanks for reading!