Getting mad with my lucet! grrrr...

Making, Pictures, Queries, Resources

Moderator: Moderators

Post Reply
User avatar
Aitken Drum
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: High Peak

Getting mad with my lucet! grrrr...

Post by Aitken Drum »

Please please somebody please I am begging you .... help me with my lucet work... I am trying desperately to make cord with a wooden lucet that came with no instructions. :roll:

I have trawled the internet and have followed many many different instructions, and what seems a comparatively easy process is actually doing my swede in... aggghh... :x

What I require are - simple baby instructions on how to start off a lucet cord, how to continue stitching to my desired length, and how to finish off my lovely cord.

Also - what is the best type of thread to use? I am practicing with linen thread, but should I use wool?? We are 15thC WoTR....

(sniff)

User avatar
ViscontesseD'Asbeau
Posts: 299
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 10:57 am
Location: Xanadu

Post by ViscontesseD'Asbeau »

1. Hold lucet in hand you prefer.

2. Take length of yarn and stick it through hole in lucet's handle (if there is one - if not, no worries. Ignore that).

3. Wind yarn round both forks lucet in a figure of 8, starting with left fork.

4. Bring yarn back to right fork and pull in front of lucet fork, above existing thread.

5. Pass lower (existing) thread over upper. Pull tight.

6. Turn lucet clockwise in your palm.

7. Now place yarn against fork above existing loop.

8. Pull lower loop over upper loop. Pull tight.

9. Turn clockwise every time, and mark your lucet on one side. Always leave this side up, with work in progress so you remember where you left it.




You can build up speed by perfecting the trick of pulling the new loop tight AS you turn the lucet in your hand. Wind work in progress round handle of your lucet,

Hope that makes sense.

Ah and keep going til you have enough. Draw working thread through loops. Pull tight.

As for fibres, worsted (smooth strong) wool is easier to learn on and more forgiving of mistakes. Probably silk would be better once you get the hand of it. Or linen, depending on end use. The Mulberry Dyer has lots of useful yarns for lucetting.

Links to some how tos here:

http://www.geocities.com/damelynnette/L ... html#HowTo

User avatar
Sarah Elessar
Posts: 22
Joined: Wed Nov 08, 2006 11:28 pm
Location: Just outside Basingstoke

Post by Sarah Elessar »

I taught myself using a combination of these two sites to help me... took several attempts to get it right, but once you get the hang of it its easy... It's a lot easier to demonstrate to someone than it is to describe it though!!

http://kws.atlantia.sca.org/photos/lucet/

http://www.stringpage.com/lucet/lucet.html

User avatar
lucy the tudor
Post Knight
Posts: 1984
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:57 am
Location: Lancashire
Contact:

lucetting

Post by lucy the tudor »

I can post you a copy of my instruction sheet with diagrams if you pm me your address.
I would say that you have the right idea if you think it would be easier to get the technique with wool first, then move on to linen thread. Linen thread doesn't move along freely and can frustrate an experienced hand with a lucet if they are not concentrating, whereas wool allows you to watch the telly and have a row with the kids without missing a stroke!
If you don't get the hang of it on paper, and are coming to the NLHF in the Spring, I can help you in person, as has already been said, it's much easier when the person is there.
Lucetting is great, once you get the knack, metres of lovely strong cord in a very short time.
It is so worth the perseverance, Good Luck.

Lucy
lucythetudor@gmail.com

a filthy, *rse-grabbing strumpet, masquerading as a demure two-door lady.

User avatar
Aitken Drum
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: High Peak

Post by Aitken Drum »

Thanks very much everyone, some great links - cheers. :D I will abandon using the linen thread, it is proving to be a pig.

And I shouldn't have cut my fingernails the other day - I just knew I would need them for something. :? tut.

User avatar
Annis
Post Knight
Posts: 1191
Joined: Wed Dec 14, 2005 12:59 pm
Location: Here, there, and everywhere!
Contact:

Post by Annis »

ONce you've practised a bit you can make it two-coloured, now thats really pretty.
"They call me 'quiet girl', but I'm a riot"

kate/bob
Posts: 243
Joined: Tue Jan 24, 2006 10:00 pm
Location: deepest Staffordshire

Post by kate/bob »

if you tell the mulberry dyer that you want something for lucetting they'll suggest something appropriate. They're very helpful

User avatar
Alice the Huswyf
Post Knight
Posts: 1308
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2005 7:13 am
Location: Please do not distract the exhibit

Post by Alice the Huswyf »

I can't lucet at all. Not even with ever so many people patiently teaching me, and bone implements.

It is not widely depicted or used in the C15th, (but then neither are mail-hammers) despite its popularity in re-enactment.

Fingerweave instead. There are several methods, from simplistic (my level) to ornate trimmings (Soper Lane Silk Women style). There are instructions in 'The Medieval Tailor's Assistant'. 'Tak V Bowes Departed' is a very good dedicated manual from the SLS Women and is easy to follow. Nor have I yet mislaid the equipment for this technique!

User avatar
Tuppence
Post Knight
Posts: 1397
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2005 6:20 pm
Location: chaos-world, west yorks
Contact:

Post by Tuppence »

It's largely a re-enactorism for most periods anyway...

do some finger weaving - simpler (or admittedly, much more complicated if you pick one of the complicated ones :D ) - and so much more accurate.

I can lucet, but I do it my own way that I figured out myself with no help or instructions. Seems to be different from how everybody else does it, so I won't give details to avoid confusing you.

Don't use linen though! Have used everything from cotton (embroidery and crochet - mostly for practise cos it's dead cheap) - through to silk, which is by far the nicest to use cos it's v soft on the fingers.

Linen, although strong is quite a hard fibre, so it's murder on your fingers if yuo want to pull it v tight. Also - brittle fibre - not best for cord of any kind.
"What a lovely hat! But may I make one teensy suggestion? If it blows off, don't chase it."
Miss Piggy
RIP Edward the avatar cat.

User avatar
Aitken Drum
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: High Peak

Post by Aitken Drum »

Oh great I can do finger weaving but will have a gander in the MTA to brush up me skills. I used to finger weave as a kid, making 'ladders for the spiders to climb up'! :?

Thanks everyone - you're ever so helpful :D

Merry Christmas!!

User avatar
Alice the Huswyf
Post Knight
Posts: 1308
Joined: Wed Sep 21, 2005 7:13 am
Location: Please do not distract the exhibit

Post by Alice the Huswyf »

Period fingerweaving makes cords or tapes and shouldn't be making ladders (arachnid ropes, perhaps).

Be warned of anything that makes weaving with pegs or fingers instead of pegs - this is a craft method popularised during the 1970's craft revival.

GinaB
Posts: 129
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 10:07 pm
Location: UK
Contact:

Post by GinaB »

Linen, although strong is quite a hard fibre, so it's murder on your fingers if yuo want to pull it v tight. Also - brittle fibre - not best for cord of any kind.
Funny - I've just posted that I have always found fingerloop braids in linen quite strong! :) I use a weaving linen and ply it though, not the coarser linen. I don't use thicker cord. But it certainly can be murder on your fingers...

User avatar
ViscontesseD'Asbeau
Posts: 299
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 10:57 am
Location: Xanadu

Post by ViscontesseD'Asbeau »

Yes, have to agree with Gina. I've lucetted with some lovely linen from Mulberry Dyer and my own handspun linen, and found the finished cord to be strangely elastic and not at all hard on the hands. Think that's a bit of a myth. :D I was surprised how much give they have.

User avatar
Tuppence
Post Knight
Posts: 1397
Joined: Wed Aug 17, 2005 6:20 pm
Location: chaos-world, west yorks
Contact:

Post by Tuppence »

the finished cord to be strangely elastic and not at all hard on the hands.
Was talking about the thread itself not the finished cord.
Think that's a bit of a myth.
Wow, I'm mythical.
As it happens, what I wrote is based on personal experience of three days spent making cord from linen thread produced by Debbie.

Think I still have some pictures of the raw & bleeding hands around somewhere...



Cord made from linen is very strong - linen as a fibre is very strong, but very brittle. Really basic fibre knowledge.
So the point I was making is that while it's strong it's very strong, but when it wears it snaps far more easily than any fibre of comparative thickness etc.

Cord from, the same thickness etc of, for example, cotton (and no, not correct for many periods) would be less strong, but far more supple and less brittle.

Silk obviously is the strongest of all, as as a fibre it has a tensile strength higher than steel.

Of course the strongest fibre of all would be human hair, but that might upset people.
"What a lovely hat! But may I make one teensy suggestion? If it blows off, don't chase it."
Miss Piggy
RIP Edward the avatar cat.

GinaB
Posts: 129
Joined: Fri Jul 29, 2005 10:07 pm
Location: UK
Contact:

Post by GinaB »

thread itself not the finished cord
Ahh!

I've read somewhere that lace (as in bobbin/needlewoven, etc) used to dampen the linen - in extreme circumstances work in dampened cellars to avoid breakage of the very fine threads they used to use.
Think I still have some pictures of the raw & bleeding hands around somewhere
You can keep those to yourself :wink:

Actually, I've had blisters and serious damage when using fine silk as well. (I imagine human hair would slice through!) What I have found is that if I concentrate more on stretching my arms apart to get the tension, as opposed to pulling the loops towards me, it really makes a difference to my fingers. Its now habit for me to braid in this way.

However, they are pretty calloused in the weirdest places now from fingerloop braiding, so perhaps its that....

User avatar
Spurious
Posts: 14
Joined: Sun May 13, 2007 7:53 pm
Location: Basingstoke

Post by Spurious »


User avatar
ViscontesseD'Asbeau
Posts: 299
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 10:57 am
Location: Xanadu

Post by ViscontesseD'Asbeau »

Recently discovered Ziggy's lucets:

http://www.thelucet.co.uk/

They have a handy bobbin that you also use as a stopper, so you don't lose work in progress if you have to put it away.... Although 'inauthentic' as it's his invention, you can always hide the bobbin in a pouch when work's in progress, then use it when you put your cord away. I use mine all the time now for lucetting at home - have an 'in car' lucet (his plastic one), too, as my favourite lucet is a bone one and I can't risk the kids sitting on it in the car! He does a wooden lucet, too but I'm sticking with the bone one as it;s very comfortable. He has a little booklet that shows you some modern techniques - no good for re-enactment costume but fun to make, for yourself.

I always hated lucetting as I thought it wrecked my hands for spinning - til someone showed me a better technique, and I lucet much more now it no longer hurts my fingers! Also found it less punishing on the hands when I switched from an awful clunky wooden lucet to a narrow waisted bone one. The Ziggy plastic lucet is also narrow waisted so wasy to handle.

I'd found the Mulberry Dyer's linen thread is not hard on the hands at all - my own handspun linen is far harsher than their's - if you have problems it's probably the quality of thread, or bad technique!

Flax is different to spin because you have to spin it wet, unlike other fibres. Irish spinners used to pass it through their mouths so the archaeologists find skulls with characteristic lines of wear on certain teeth, made by the linen thread abrading them.

User avatar
Aitken Drum
Posts: 82
Joined: Mon Oct 08, 2007 2:34 pm
Location: High Peak

Post by Aitken Drum »

Finally.... finally.... after many stops and starts... I have finally got the hang of lucetting!! hurrah!!

Thanks everyone for your great help and advice, especially Lucy the Tudor and your fantastic instructions - cheers! :D

Merry Christmas everyone :D

User avatar
lucy the tudor
Post Knight
Posts: 1984
Joined: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:57 am
Location: Lancashire
Contact:

Cheers!

Post by lucy the tudor »

Well done, (and very glad to have helped a bit too) :D
Lucy
lucythetudor@gmail.com

a filthy, *rse-grabbing strumpet, masquerading as a demure two-door lady.

Post Reply