Fiber Lace Squares

By Carol Duvall

What fun this project was to make! Though this was something that was featured on our HIA 2002 special, we have never featured it on our show, and it looked like such fun, I finally decided to give it a try. I was right. It was fun.

You will need a sewing machine, but if all you can do is turn it on and sew a reasonably straight line, that's all you will need to do. It's that easy. And though the one I demonstrated was only about 12 inches square, it's amazing the number of places it can be used.


Fibers like these are sold with a variety of textures on one card.
  1. Cut two pieces of water-soluble stabilizer to desired size. Ours was 12 inches square. Lay one piece of the stabilizer on covered work surface. Spray lightly with basting spray (figure A).
  2. Take the ribbon you have selected for the border and, starting at one corner, form a square (figure B). If the ribbon is longer than your square, you can either cut it off there or fold it back down across the center of the square and treat it as one of the fibers.
  3. Randomly place the other fibers one at a time across the open space (like a web) to form a pleasing pattern (figure C). Press down slightly to hold them to the stabilizer.
  4. When you have as many fibers as desired in position, cover the entire piece with a second piece of the stabilizer (figure D). Again, press down lightly.
  5. Take the entire square to the sewing machine and, starting at one corner, stitch over 1 inch, then make a right turn and stitch a straight line to the ribbon on the opposite side. Make a left turn and stitch about 3/4 or 1 inch; then make a second left turn and stitch straight across the piece. Continue in this manner, making all the stitches in rows across the open space. Start again and repeat in the opposite direction so you have a grid over the entire piece (figure E).
  6. Place the entire piece in a bowl of tepid water and wait for up to 5 minutes or until the base of the piece (both pieces of the stabilizer) has melted away (figure F).
  7. Gently squeeze the excess water from the "lace" square and place it on a towel to dry (figure G).
  8. Trim any excess fibers and threads as needed then: Gather in the center and wear as a jabot. Gather in the center to make a poof and wear in a pocket. Fold in half on the diagonal, separate the points, and wear at the neckline as a semi-collar (figure H). Use as a doily. Mat, frame and hang on the wall (figure I), etc.

Figure A

Figure B

Figure C

Figure E

Figure G

Figure I

Figure D

Figure F

Figure H