The FSL Battenberg Lace Air Balloon Ornament is a set of 2 designs for large (5" x 7") hoops. The height of the finished ornament is about 10.5".
For this project, besides embroidery threads and water-soluble mesh, you will need a balloon and craft glitter spray or hair spray (optional).
To embroider this type of lace, please read our recommendations first.
Stabilizers: We recommend to use water-soluble mesh, such as Vilene. Vilene D0102 is a non woven dissolvable stabilizer which is imported into the US, is sold in large rolls and is sometimes repackaged under different brand names. Two of these brand names are Wash-Away and Aqua Magic. Film-like water soluble stabilizers, such as Solvy, are not suitable for Free-Standing Lace embroidery.
Threads: The thinner the thread, the finer the final product will be. That is why we recommend that at least one of the threads, either in the bobbin or in the needle, should be cotton, which gives bulk to the lace and makes it look hand-made. Embroidery polyester thread will make very fine weblike lace.
Embroidery rayon thread is too soft, it does not keep its shape and very often its color fades under the influence of chemicals from the watersoluble mesh.
If you are using 50- or 60-weight cotton, you can use it both in the bobbin and in the needle. If you use 40-weight cotton thread for the needle, you can use regular polyester bobbin thread.
We used Signature machine quilting cotton thread, but similar threads from other companies should work just as well.
Needles: We use size 80/12 embroidery needles and 80/12 metallic needles. Our experience shows that cotton thread used with metallic needles gives less lint. The needles should be sharp, so it's advisable to change them after every project.
Most Importantly: ALWAYS make a test stitch-out of the design and wash away the stabilizer. This helps you to select the threads, needles, stabilizers and settings of your machine correctly. DO NOT embroider several designs in one hoop.
Embroider the balloon file 7 times. Embroider the basket file 4 times.
Cut away the excess stabilizer. Keep all the scraps of stabilizer, as you'll need them later.
Rinse designs and leave them to air dry. Press if needed.
Manually connect the balloon parts by the loops to make a sphere.
Slightly wet the sphere. Insert a balloon through the large opening and start filling it with air.
Stop when your lace balloon is tight over the air balloon. Tie the air balloon.
Place the scraps of watersoluble mesh into a bowl and add some warm water to get a thick, pastey solution.
Coat the lace with this solution and leave to air dry.
When it's dry, you can also spray the balloon with a craft glitter spray or hair spray.
When the second coat is dry, pop the balloon and carefully take it out.
Stitch together the 4 parts of the basket.
Attach the basket to the bottom of the balloon (the one with the larger openning).
Sew strings to the upper part of the balloon to hang it.
The ornament is ready. Enjoy!