Threadwork with Nick Coman

Yesterday was another magical, creative day for me. I took a workshop with Nick Coman, who was teaching thread lacework. I had only dabbled in this technique, and it was a few years ago, so I jumped right in.

Our class project was to make a small piece of lacework with a central motif, best hung in a window when completed. Having read the instructions at least eight times, evidently with dirty glasses on, I took not a fabric or embroidered motif, but an 8-1/2″x11″ photo of an upholstery motif taken with my iPhone at JoAnn’s! Nick and I decided that that turned out to be a happy mis-read because it challenged me to cover the whole piece with repeating motifs using different colored thread.

I chose some small silk leaves along with pieces of yarn and thread and started my sandwich on water-soluble stabilizer:

After adding a pile of “goodies,” as Nick calls them, I took my sandwich to my machine and began free-motion stitching all over the sandwich, using the leaf as my pattern:

I finished my piece in class, then took it home to soak off the stabilizer and to block the piece overnight. Here are the results. The first photo is the threadwork on a white background:

The next photo is my piece held a distance away from the white background so you can see the light coming through:

I began sewing at the age of 12, making my own clothes. Nick and I discussed how these lace pieces can be incorporated into garments, which then led to a great discussion on fabric dyeing and discharging. I went home feeling very right-brained and ready to create!


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