I (sort of) do, and I think you should, too. It is really such a lovely technique, and it adds such a nice dimension to hand stitching. Like I mentioned in my post about my purse, I saw this tutorial on a form of smocking (at least, I’m pretty sure it’s smocking, but I’m not positive—the web page was in French), I decided to try it out.
I did a little sample, first.
It took a little guessing and trying things out, since the instructions were in French, and Google Translate just wasn’t cutting it. But after I got the idea down, it went pretty smoothly. The repetitive stitching may be tedious to some, but I like it, for the most part it is relaxing and a nice activity to do while watching a good movie.
I really liked both sides, actually, so I set about trying to figure out a way to get the results of the “back” without all the loose threads hanging out on that side.
I did pretty good, but I still have to perfect it. Maybe I’ll share that with you sometime.
One part of smocking that I did not enjoy was marking up the fabric. Especially when it came time to make my purse; it seemed like it took almost as much time to mark up the fabric as it did to sew the thing. I decided to try a different way of marking.
I made myself a little marking template (and you can too, if you want to try this kind of smocking). I just drew out a grid of half inch squares and punched holes with an awl in the corner of each square.
Then I simply laid this template down on my fabric and made little dots with a fabric marker at each hole. This method worked pretty well; it was much faster than drawing the grid out for each piece of fabric, and it saved the ink of my disappearing pen, but it wasn’t perfect. The fabric I used was dark and very shifty, so it was hard to keep the fabric from moving underneath the template, and the pen I used (light blue) didn’t show up super great. Anyways, that’s my two cents on that.
I have since seen a very detailed and helpful posts about how to get started smocking, and I think they’re great. Definitely check it out if you’re interested in learning more about smocking.
If you have any tips about smocking, I would love to hear them. Have a great weekend. Be sure to check in next week, I have a fun project to share with you, and I think I’ll be doing a little giveaway to celebrate my 100th post. See you then.