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Take a look at this adorable “Little French Bonnet” designed by Mary Caviness. Featured in our Sew Beautiful: Favorite Heirloom Sewing Designs special edition, this ecru bonnet is a combination of insertion laces, Swiss entredeux and lace beading with pink silk ribbon accents.
The design uses several beginning heirloom sewing techniques, including gathered lace to entredeux. Although lovely, this technique can be challenging for a couple reasons. As you stitch the gathered lace and entredeux together, the lace sometimes clumps as it’s attached or the sewing machine feed dogs ungather the lace as it goes under the presser foot. To help control the gathered lace while stitching, it is helpful to use a piece of Tiger Tape. Follow this step-by-step tutorial from Sue Pennington Stewart for applying gathered lace to entredeux using this technique:
1. Trim waste fabric from one side of entredeux.
2. Gather lace to desired fullness to fit entredeux strip by pulling the uppermost thread in lace header. Pin strip of gathered lace to ironing board or padded surface right side up. Adjust gathers evenly.
3. Cut a piece of Tiger Tape the length of gathered lace strip. Tape strips may also be cut in shorter lengths if you are curving the gathered lace or applying tape to a very long strip of lace.
4. Stick Tiger Tape to gathered lace strip just below lace header (between 1/8 and 1/4 inch from the lace header edge). This will hold lace gathers in place as you stitch lace to entredeux.
5. Set tension settings to normal balance. Place matching lightweight thread in bobbin and needle. Thread should match entredeux and lace.
6. Set machine for a center zigzag (L=1.0-2.0; W=3.0-3.5). Remove lace from board and place trimmed edge of entredeux and gathered lace header side by side, right sides up with edges touching. Length should be adjusted so left swing of zigzag hits as many consecutive holes in entredeux as possible. Width should be adjusted so zigzag travels from hole of entredeux to inside edge of gathered lace edging and pulls lace header snuggly against entredeux (Photo 1).
7. When gathered lace is attached, remove Tiger Tape (Photo 2).
Want to get all the lace, ribbon, fabric and instructions you need to make this sweet little bonnet in one convenient kit? Check out our Little French Bonnet Kit! Other great project kits we have available in our online store include our classic Fancy Slip & Panty Kit and Connie Palmer’s precious Emma Jo Doll Kit.
As always, we pray for the men and women serving our nation in harm’s way and for you.
Much Love to You All & May God Bless,