Thursday, January 7, 2010

Embellishing Smocking with Bullion Roses

One of the most elegant stitches to embellish your smocking is the bullion rose. I am guessing you either love or hate bullion knots, right?  Many people struggle with making bullions and get very frustrated in the process. It's really quite simple once you get the hang of it.

The right tools is the key to perfecting your bullions. You can use a wide variety of threads - the weight of the thread determines the size of the bullion. I prefer to use dmc perle cotton #8 when making bullions for smocking, as they give off a pretty sheen and they make the size bullion rose that I desire. Other types of thread, such as embroidery floss, floche or silk ribbon can also be used.

One reason people struggle with their bullions could possibly be from using the wrong type needle.  I prefer using a straw or milliner's needle, which is the same thickness beside the eye as it is for almost all of the rest of the needle. A needle that is wider at the eye of the needle causes alot of grief when you are trying to pull it thru all those wraps. Using a straw or milliner's needle will suddenly result in easier made bullions! 

I have a step-by-step tutorial that you can use if you need help in learning or perfecting your bullions - just stop by Southern Stitches and click on the tutorials link to get started!


Lindy said...

Do you make the bullions with the pleats tightly together, and how do you keep them tightly together while forming the rose?

LAnderson said...

Hey Lindy - excellent question! Yes, I leave my pleats tightly together - I just keep them snugly together by holding them with my fingers as I work the bullion.

Sara said...

that's a perfect bullion rose!!! You are so right about the proper needle. Makes the difference!!!

Personalized Sketches and Sentiments said...

OH! these are amazing! with working full time now, I am not able to blog read as much as I would love to do, but I will be back! And I am also posting you as one of my favorite "Blogs to Browse" on my side.

Blessings & Aloha!


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