I seem to have become a tad enamoured of bobbin lace. This weekend I hosted Creative Fibre’s first Bobbin Lace for Beginners class – strictly in a support capacity, although I doubt I’ll get away with that for long. Especially as we had 3 keen new students! In fact, everyone was so keen, we decided to start a new club – the Auckland Lacemakers Club. This isn’t in competition with Bridge Lacemakers, but rather augments those people who have an interest in preserving heritage crafts like this.
Once these skills are allowed to die out, that’s it. However, it seems that’s a loooong way off happening. Bobbins are doing a brisk trade, books are still being published, and there are lacemakers all over the world, working away at this exacting craft.
I say exacting, because after this weekend’s efforts, I’m clearly going to have to pace myself and take more stretchy breaks – my neck and shoulders kinda seized up from bending over the board for hours and hours on end.
But look what I made! Looky-look!
(Torchon lace ground bookmark; No.8 mercerized cottons)
Due to a bad case of tennis elbow (or perhaps more appropriately – knitter’s elbow!), I’m having to take a break from knitting and crocheting. Even spinning is curtailed to short bursts. Fortunately, I went along to the recently held Creative Fibre Auckland Area Retreat and seem to have picked up a possible new craft – bobbin lace.
At first glance it seems impossibly fiddly (it is) and the domain of the mad and OCD-afflicted (it is). Yet somehow I find the exacting nature of the work quite relaxing. Plus, it doesn’t exacerbate the elbow injury. The bobbins themselves are also ridiculously cute, and I like cute. Especially cute with bling!
On the last day of the Retreat, I was admiring someone else tackling a very fiddly bit of lace, when somehow I found myself beginning work on a practice piece… and agreeing to go along to the lacemaker’s guild. Not sure how this has happened, not sure how long it will last, but I guess we’ll see how mad I am… or not, as the case may be…
(picture coming soon – it got eaten so fast I didn’t have a chance to take a snap!)
4 oz butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 tsp vanilla essence
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup milk
2 tbsp cocoa
1 tbsp milk
Melt butter, add sugar and golden syrup. Gently heat until well combined. Cool to lukewarm.
Add eggs and vanilla essence. Beat with fork.
Sift in dry ingredients, add 1/2 cup milk, mix well. Pour half the caramel mixture into greased and floured cake tin.
Sift cocoa and mix to smooth paste with 1 tbsp milk. Add to remaining caramel mixture, mix well. Pour over caramel mixture in cake tin. Bake 35-40 mins at 180C.
Note: If you differ the height at which you pour in the chocolate mixture, it will penetrate the caramel mixture to different depths, creating an interesting effect in the baked cake. Alternatively, swirl a little with a knife.