Tag Archives: shadow applique

All About Lace Tape~Part 1

Lately, there have been considerable discussions and questions about lace tape, its origin and uses.  The history is quite interesting, as its development involved a salvage warehouse and an unraveled sweater for my Rebecca and midnight transatlantic phone calls. That was in 1987 when I first brought this product to the heirloom sewing public.

Most of this history is detailed in this post. Because lace tape is one of my favorite sewing products, I’d like to share some applications and techniques. For many years I taught a 6-hour class around the country. So there is a lot of material on the subject, too much for one post. Lace tape can be used for shadow applique’, colored entredeux, colored shark’s teeth, tiny piping and so much more. So stay turned for details.  A few future posts will feature projects with detailed directions.


Approximately 3/8″ wide and available in a rainbow of colors, lace tape is a loosely woven 100% cotton trim. It has a gathering thread on each side and is wonderful for lace shaping.  It also can add a bit of color to an heirloom project.

lt 2 examplesrecol

Now there are two varieties of lace tape:  Japanese and Swiss. The lace tape shown above and used on each of the items pictured below is Japanese.


1. for lace insertion substitute joined to lace edging or other insertion


Peach lace tape was joined to lace edging and then stitched to flat bishop before smocking. See Molly’s Lace Tape Nightie for more pictures and information.

preparation: Like heirloom trims, lace tape is easier to work with after being starched and pressed, unless it is being shaped. Use the finest thread, preferably 80/2 Madeira Cotona,and the smallest needle appropriate to the thread size.

technique:Butt lace tape to lace. Zig zag the two pieces together with an approximate stitch setting of W 1.5-2.0, depending on width of lace header, L .8-1.0 edging. NOTE: An edge joining foot makes this much easier.

1-lt to lionsxx

Lace tape joined to Aesop’s Fables Binche lace.

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Yellow Rose Heirloom Pillow

It’s hard to predict just what sort of things will speak to a child. From toys to food, their tastes differ and often surprise both parents and grandparents.
Laurel loves this pillow. It is her special treat to sleep with it when she spends the night. Frankly, neither side pressed against the sweet cheeks of a 5-year old would seem to make for pleasant dreams. With a galaxy of French knots on the front and pearl buttons on the back, it would be far less comfortable than the pima cotton pillowcases in the children’s room.


But she loves it and asked me if she could have it when she is grown up. I expect she will own it long before that.

Featured in an article in the Heirloom Quilting series I wrote for Creative Needle magazine. Portions of that article are included in this post. In order to keep this post to a reasonable length, I have left out detailed instructions for piping, sharks’ teeth and the ruffle. Continue reading