The Technique

The technique

The basic equipment for lace-making includes a pillow, the spools (bobbins) with thread, pins, a crochet hook and the design (pricking). Each hand holds a pair of bobbins. The number of pairs needed depends on the design.
There are different types of bobbin lace pillows: Flat cushions and cylindrical cushions, which lie on a stand or in a small box. The bolster used in the Ahrntal Valley lies in a basket.
The technique consists of two movements: in the middle the bobbins are crossed, per hand they are twisted together. The different sequences of turning and crossing are called strokes or stitches. There are four basic stitches: the whole stitch, the half stitch, the line stitch and the star stitch. All types of lace can be made with these basic stitches.
The thread in various strengths is wound onto the bobbins. It is usually made of bleached or unbleached linen or cotton. But also copper wires coated with gold or silver (Lyonese threads) are used.
In 1802, mining entrepreneurs from the Ahrntal founded the "Leonische Fabrik der Ahrner Gewerkschaft" in Stans near Schwaz.
Copper from the Prettau mine was used to produce the Lyonese threads.
In Prettau, bobbin lace was mostly made outdoors in daylight, as one can see better and it is easier to follow the pricking design.

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