Bedfordshire bobbin lace is a braid/plait based straight lace.  The designs usually involve a graceful clothwork trail that meanders through the design, and are usually curvilinear rather than geometric (except for the simplest ones).  The ground is usually a 4 strand plait/braid, often with picots.  The more complex designs often require threads to be constantly added and removed to achieve a good density.

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Comment by Administrator on April 6, 2014 at 4:48pm
Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti on October 11, 2013 at 7:33pm

I find leaf tallies easier than square ones or cucumbers, but thst is because I make more of them, I suppose.

Whenever I make square ones or cucumbers I Always use the "Gate" method, - the central passive crosses from the start side to finish on the opposite side.  It makes for a better tally, I think, as that central passive can easily be drawn to one side, and you have a loose area. when it crosses over, then the tally stays more regular.

Comment by Kate Bainbridge on October 11, 2013 at 1:34pm
Many thanks for this comment, it makes clear why I was having so much trouble with the shape. I was using the central & one outside passive and could not work out what was wrong
Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti on October 10, 2013 at 9:18pm

However, the instructions for the leaf tally and the diagram don't match!!  She says tie the knot with the 2 outside passives - the way I do it, - but the diagram shows a knot with the central and one outside passive!!!

Use the 2 outer passives, I suggest!  Hope that trick helps you.  I sometimes put up the pin at the end of the tally, then tie the knot, remove the pin, and ease the knot up. I seem to get a better shape that way.

Comment by Kate Bainbridge on October 10, 2013 at 3:59am
Many thanks everyone. I have now found this knot tying method in Practical Skills in Bobbin Lace, By Bridget M Cook. What a fabulous book this is!
All I have to do now it try to make it work on my leaves. Kate
Comment by Administrator on October 9, 2013 at 4:35pm

The bottom half of a leaf tally is the hard part.  Making it wider and wider is easy, making it narrower and narrower is hard.  I always end my tallies with ctc.  I use those pesky "parking pins" that Liz mentioned, and they do get in the way. I have tried her method and it does work.  I've seen it described in books, but can't remember which ones.

Comment by Kate Bainbridge on October 7, 2013 at 4:43am
Many thanks. I wondered,d about that. I Havel seen a knot tied at the edge of tallies in a book but could not find it again! Many thanks for your help I shall give it try. Kate
Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti on October 6, 2013 at 7:54pm

Well, I give some people the shudders, as I often tie a single knot at the bottom of my leaves - the 2 outside passives, (just the one pass.) and then pull the leaf into shape. I was taught that by a lady who learned her lacemaking skills from the continent.

Actually tying a knot is shown in the small blue Rutgers Cluny book.

If working a group of leaves - ie for a daisy, then tying a knot a the bottom of each one keeps them 'safe" when making the rest of them, and eliminates getting "parking pins' in the way!  No-one will see the single little knot when the lace is made. You can also tie a knot at the bottom of a square tally - the edge and central passives, with just the single knot.

Comment by Kate Bainbridge on October 6, 2013 at 7:38am
Hi, I have just been trying to learn leaves but get a bit stuck on how to shape the bottom part.
Mine se,em to be lop sided and often straight on one side.
Also I am not sure how to end the leaf.
Can anyone help, please.
Comment by Elizabeth Ligeti on September 8, 2013 at 11:15pm

And I will be wearing it on Sunday when demonstrating at a pioneer cottage!!!


What really amazes me, - a few years ago an old lady (now sadly passed on) showed me how to wear it correctly - with the peak pulled down to overhang my forehead. She remembered her Aunt Always wore one!!  That really brings history up to date and into the real world!!


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