Homework: Scalloped Madeira Applique Hem

I’m feeling a bit behind on my homework.   The assignment is to do the Point de Paris stitch on the scalloped hem of a doll-sized dress creating a scalloped Madeira applique hem.

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This is really the second time I’ve tried doing a Madeira applique; however, it’s the first time using very fine thread (YLI Heirloom #100) and also magnification on a delicate hem.  I do not wear glasses, so I think this created an extra hurdle for me.  I felt just a little sea sick until I found the right distance and balance.

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I’m sure it’s just that it is still a new skill.  I had four thumbs and too many fingers for a while.  It seemed intense, and I found that I could not work on the project much more than a half an hour, sitting at a table, in good lighting.

The aim is to make each stitch 1/16″ in length, consistently.  Two stitches are made in the base fabric and then one diagonal stitch is made at the edge of the applique before returning to the next 1/16″ of the base fabric.  A little tension on the thread forms the lovely holes.

My hope is that by the time I get to the other end of the hem, I will gain the consistency that will create more beautiful stitches.  I cannot expect immediate perfection, of course.  It will take time to get it right.  This is a practice doll’s dress, and I know at least four young ladies who will love it no matter what!

In an earlier post, I mentioned the reason for this homework.  Wendy Schoen, of Wendy Schoen Designs, is visiting the Lakes & Prairies Smockers (L&PS) chapter of the Smocking Arts Guild of America.  She will be at the Textile Center with us on April 6 and 7 for a two-day workshop.  She will teach her class entitled, “Tickle Me Pink.”

L&PS member,  Maria Cremer, along with a few others, amazingly pulled together a pre-class; a doll’s dress created to practice some of the techniques that Wendy will cover during the workshop.  This preparation is intended to allow us to get the most out of Wendy’s two days of teaching.

With Maria’s permission, here is a picture of her finished doll’s dress.  You will notice other techniques; shadow work embroidery on the bodice as well as bullion roses, a scalloped edging on the collar.

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Here is a picture of her finished hem.

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Maria said this too is her first attempt at this technique, and she is also looking forward to learning more from Wendy.  Our practice doll’s dress is made of batiste, as Maria believes it is easier to learn on that kind of fabric.  During the workshop, the dress kit will contain linen and organdy for this technique.  I suspect the grain of the linen will aid in consistent spacing.

Seeing Maria’s finished work is just the encouragement I need to keep going on this new skill.  It is gorgeous!  My many thanks to Maria for allowing me to share her work here.

The next L&PS meeting is this Saturday morning, where we will continue the lessons for this dress.  There’s still room for you!!  If you would like to join us for this class or the upcoming workshop, send Lynn Schoonmaker an email at schoonmaker_1@msn.com, or contact me at bcperry@kmtel.com or 507-461-6330.

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