This simple tutorial goes along with my YouTube video about joining flat lace to flat lace. It’s a simple process. The first thing that you want to do is to starch the laces. I prefer to plan ahead and cut the lace lengths needed (cut about 2″ longer than what the finished length will be) and then place the lace in the bathtub on top of a white towel and starch – REAL starch, NOT Mary Ellen’s Best Press – them until they are dripping wet. Then I hang them over the shower bar to dry – it only takes about an hour and it keeps the iron from getting gunked up.
Once the laces have dried, give them a press. If pressing them makes them too soft to work with, repeat the process.
To join the laces, you will want to use lightweight thread & machine needles – Aurifil 80 weight thread or Mettler 60 weight thread can be used. With the 80 weight thread, a size 60/8 or 65/9 Microtex or Universal needle should be used. With the 60 weight thread, a 65/9 or 70/10 Microtex or universal needle should be used. The 60 weight can also be used for construction. The 80 weight is only for lace joining – it is not strong enough for construction
It is most helpful to use either an edge-joining foot or an open toed foot for joining laces. Try them out and see which one works best for you. Both can be seen in action on the video along with the end results.
When joining flat laces, set the machine to a zigzag stitch with a stitch length of 1.0 and a width wide enough that both header threads of the lace will be encased (shown in red).
If trying the different feet for this technique still results in difficulties, you can try using OESD Wash-Away Tape behind the lace. This will hold the lace in place as well as stabilize behind the laces for stitching. The end results will be slightly different than stitching without the stabilizer (seen on video), but if it is the way that you can make it work for you, then use it.
You can join as many laces together as needed for your fancy band. For more detailed French Machine Sewing techniques, I do have a book available (with bonnet pattern) in my Etsy shop.
Below I will add links to some of the products that I use, should you need any of these.
I hope you’ll enjoy trying out some French Machine sewing!
Disclosure: The recommended products contain affiliate links. If you purchase something through one of those links I may receive a small commission, so thank you for supporting me when you shop! These are my opinions and are not representative of the companies that create these products. These are the products I use and have gotten great results with. I would never recommend poor quality products.