Picky picky picky

A while back I got an email from Gavi. She had found me through my blog and wondered if I could turn the lace from her wedding dress into the edging for her tallit. Gavi is tall. Her elegant wedding dress had a tulle split over-skirt all edged in lace. It was a lot of lace.

My first problem was figuring out how to price such a task. My wise friends from my online sewing discussion group suggested that set a timer, unpick a foot a foot of lace, stitch it to a piece of silk and then see how long that took and then multiply that by the number of linear feet in the tallit. I'm glad that I have wise friends because otherwise I would have charged far too little for the task. On my own, I would have charged so little that workers in China would have refused to take the job for so little money for so much time. Luckily I have friends smarter than I am.
For the last few days I have been slowly doing all of the hand embroidery for Charlie's tallit. My hand  and wrist was hurting from that task so I decided to tackle unpicking the yards and yards of lace edging. To give my hand a rest. 

Lucky for me, I have done more than my fair share of reading of home hints from the 1920's. In more than one of these books they talk about rolling lace edging to be unpicked from a garment onto a paper tube to keep it as they would put it in the 1920's "dainty".

We didn't have a recently emptied roll of either toilet paper or paper towel, but I did have a nearly empty roll of wrapping paper.I was worried about the dye from the wrapping paper crocking (or transferring dye) onto the the lace so I covered the roll with packing tape before beginning my task. I starting unpicking lace and rolling onto the wrapping paper roll.

Using a seam ripper and a scalpel I carefully separated the lace from the tulle and horsehair. Do you find it difficult to see the stitching?

That's because it's hard to see the white stitching on the white lace.

Yesterday I put in about 8 hours of careful unpicking. I listened to music and picked away at the stitching. I watched terrible wedding reality shows on YouTube and unpicked some more.
Today I watched more terrible wedding shows and kept working away.
I worked for most of the day today and now all of the lace in on the roll and no longer on the dress.


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