My aunt Sue got inspired by the post I wrote on my grandmother's handmade dresses. This is very exciting as she is someone who so often inspires me. She is the finder of all things needed and useful, the gatekeeper of an Aladdin's cave by way of Forest Gate. Ladybird books, buttons, old cameras, haberdashery, toys and all manner of good good stuff. Everyone should have an Aunt Sue.
Once a week a little part of this cave gets taken to her stall on Broadway Market here in Hackney and we are so happy to make our visits to her a Saturday ritual. What will she have this week?
So it came as no surprise that she had some old magazines and books with instructions on how to smock, and that she knew the basics.
It was not as hard as it looks. It is case of making a few gathering stitches to form the pleat, and then sewing the pattern with decorative thread.
The upshot of it is that we have gone halves on a pleater. These do the gathering bit for you and make the whole process much faster. I am thinking about all the applications for smocking beyond dressmaking, which is definitely not my forte.
Watch this space (patiently).