Bedfordshire Bobbin Lace Cuff

Bedfordshire Lace Cuff
During the second half of the 19th century, when lacemakers were struggling to compete with the newly developed (and much cheaper) machine lace, specially shaped patterns were designed. These patterns couldn't be copied as easily by lace machines. As a result, many antique Bedfordshire patterns are available for collars, cuffs, dress decorations, and other specially shaped motifs.

Bedfordshire lace is a continuous lace. This means that the entire piece of lace is made simultaneously, starting from one end and working straight through to the other end. Bedfordshire lace is not made in individual motifs to be sewn together later like Honiton, nor are the trails connected together with 'sewings' like tape laces.

My source for for this child's cuff was Bedfordshire Lace Making by Pamela Nottingham. I enlarged the pricking 120% and worked it in 100/2 Fresia linen lace thread. The cuff ends with a short trail which will be doubled back and tacked down on the inside of the cuff. This ending provides additional strength during washing and wear, so that the lace won't unravel.


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