Sorry for long post!

I'm trying to sort out different names for known lace stitches and grounds, and along the way, hoping to learn some new lace grounds!

At present, I'm trying to make sense of one entry in A Dictionary of Lace by Pat Earnshaw. Under the entry for Reseau, she is saying essentially that this is 'ground'. For bobbin lace, she gives a fixed number of reseaux, and doesn't mention several that I know about. Still, I am assuming that she is talking about historic lace, and identifying it. No pictures or description! Or even a grid, which I would have thought important.

I've listed her entry below. Some I think I know, and I've put the cross twist descriptions in brackets (apologies to twist crossers!) For some, there is nothing in brackets (4,5,7,8,10). This is because I am trying to find out what they are. I have been doing a little research, and this is at the end, together with some questions. I'd greatly appreciate it if anyone could tell me if my conclusions are right:

1. fond simple, simple ground, fond clair, Lille, point, or net ground, tulle mesh: found in Bucks, Lille, Chantilly, Spanish bobbin, blonde
(Bucks Point net: CTTT, pin - hex grid)

2. fond double, double ground, point de Paris, Kat stitch, wire, Frech, six-point star, star, star-pointed ground, hairpin stitch, fond chant: found in French point de Paris lace, and in some Bucks, Chantilly, and Antwerp
(Kat stitch: CT pin CT, but in a very specific pattern of triangles and hexagons - hex grid)

3. cinq trous, five hole, fond a la virge, virgin ground, rose stitch (Beds): found in Antwerp, some early Valenciennes, some torchon and yak
(Rose ground: various forms, but basically corners made by stitch without pin of first 2 pairs worked, and also of second 2 pairs, then middle stitches wqith pins of middle 2, left and right 2, bottom 2, then corners again - this explanation is a muddle but you know what I mean! Everyone knows rose ground... - square grid)

4. Valenciennes, square, diamond mesh

5. rounded Valenciennes, rounded mesh: found in some Milanese and 18C Flemish laces

6. Spanish, maglia de spagna, twsted hole ground, twisted half stitch: found in silk laces, often from France and Italy, as well as Spain
(Twisted hole ground: CTT, pin CTT - that is, same as honeycomb, but in a regular pattern rather than the attractive honeycomb/kat stitch pattern. Any specific grid? I've said square grid on my website, but is Spanish lace on a hex grid? )

7. Mechlin, malines

8. droschel, vrai reseau, Brussels, bobbin mesh, Flemish ground: found in 18C point d'Angleterre, and Devon laces

9. honeycomb, fond de marriage: found in some Bucks, often used as a filling
(Honeycomb: CTT, pin CTT, but in a very specific pattern of triangles and hexagons, hex grid)

10. partridge eye, oeil de perdix, fond de neige, snowflake ground: the characterstic reseau of Binche, sometimes found in Mechlin

11. torchon
(CT, pin, CT. Square grid)

So for the ones I don't know...
Valenciennes and rounded Valenciennes. I think these use 4 pairs per pin (rather than the conventional 2). 2 pairs on each side are braided between the pins. Bobbin Lace Stitches by Bridget Cook and Geraldine Stott says various things can actually happen at the pin. No mention of rounded Valenciennes. Lace Guide by Gertrude Whiting says that rounded Valenciennes is like Valenciennes "only the joints are more open and weaker". As far as I can see, the outer pairs don't take part in the stitch at the pin for either form. I assume that this is a square grid as it's a fairly square ground. I'd be interested in any comments in this.  

Mechlin and Droschel. These look very similar in Lace Guide by Gertrude Whiting, just varying in number of twists, and braids at the pin. In fact, after looking hard at the stitch, and thinking about it, it seems to be what I call double Torchon (CTCT pin CTCT) only perhaps without the pin, and maybe more stitches at the pin (or less) and maybe more twists between the stitches. Am I right? What grid would this be? It's essentially a hexagon, so might lookpretty on a hex grid, although I've tended to do double Torchon on a square grid. (Yes, I know there aren't pins, so the grid doesn't matter. But I bet there is an underlying grid all the same!)

Oeil de perdix - I've got a book on Binche - modern Binche I suspect. There are these things they call snowflakes, which I am strongly tempted to call spiders - OK, they're not necessarily made like spiders. But there is a similarity. And they have ringed snowflakes, where two pairs circle the inner body (of the spider, hm, does a snowflake have a body?) Oeil de perdix in Lace Guide by Gertrude Whiting has ringed snowflakes. My modern Binche book has lots of snowflakes, some in a ground pattern, some with rings and some without (and some in half stitch!) But I suspect this might not be authentic. The book is Pretty Binche by Steffi Reinhardt and Katrin Zschoche, by the way, in German and English. Any comment on snowflakes or partridge eyes welcome... 

Sorry again for this long post.

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Stitches and names are always a problem. But here is my contribution.

Mechlin and Droschel are both stacks of half stitches, with no pin used to align the ground in either one. Mechlin is a stack of 4 half stitches -- ctctctct.  Droschel is a stack of 6 stitches -- ct ct ct ct ct ct.

Oeil de perdrix -- is one variant out of many many grounds used in Binche. In order to get a total picture one needs to get several books by different authors (especially continental authors). Trying to sort them out is a nightmare. But snowflakes and spiders are quite different. Snowflakes are much more complex and usually require 6 pairs. But other variants with different numbers of pairs exist. The partridge eye stitch is a variant with a hole in the middle of it, made by the sequence of working the pairs. Some are embedded in rings. Some are embedded in a diagonal frame. But there are several of the variants with holes. So I'm not going to try to give an exact sequence of movements as that would identify only one of at least half a dozen possibilities. 

Michael Giusianna's 2003 book BINCHE II, THE OLD BECOMES NEW has diagrams for 42 of the possible grounds used in Binche. His book is modern trued up versions of antique laces. So I think he was trying to diagram all the grounds (or most) that he found or used in that book. If you can find a copy of that book locally it might help. The book has the diagrams and also a set of dotted patterns, each of which is used for several of the variants. He has them all cross referenced!!!  He doesn't even try to assign names.

With the other grounds in your list, I think you are right. Except for fond double and Valenciennes round. I have never been satisfied that we know what the old writers were thinking of when they used the term "fond double". Paris is likely the one. Round Valenciennes is more of a problem. Your description as found in Milanese and 18th c Flemish is probably correct. The book by Andries and Vroom 25 VALENCIENNESKANTJES 2011 (a set of loose leafed patterns) shows several variants of Val ground and they assign centuries to the times when those grounds were used. But I'm not sure their list is complete. There is one variant of the Val round ground that has the same thread movements as one version of the "small snowflake" ground.

I have tried to assign grounds into structural classes by the thread movements, but without any attempt to assign names. That just gets too complicated. 

Jo - my last answer wasn't very helpful. But I have done some work to get diagrams which may help with the "partridge eye" ground/filling.

First, modern Flanders and Binche teachers/designers identify different classes of fancy fillings -- small snowflake, large showflake and snowball.  Each of these 3 has several variations, in some cases dozens of variations. I have sent you a private email with the diagrams.  As I understand it, the partridge eye filling is any snowball with a hole in it. There is not just one specific filling with that name, but a whole set of possibles.


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