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Joining shapes horizontally

Shapes often touch horizontally (side by size) at a point, in Torchon lace. Here is how to work this.

Cloth stitch and half stitch joining shapes horizontally
Touching diamonds in half stitch and cloth stitch. See pattern 19.

Joining shapes horizontally - pattern
Pattern representation of a horizontal join - this only shows part of the shapes

The photo shows a cloth diamond touching a half stitch diamond. However, any type of solid shape can join in the same way. I hope you can see how to adapt the following explanation for those.

The following diagram avoids the complexities of the individual stitches by showing each pair of threads as a single line. Where one line crosses another, you should work it in cloth stitch or half stitch.

Bobbin lace Joining shapes horizontally

Repeat Step Back

Working: Work the surrounding lace between the shapes at the top. Now, work the first shape as usual down to the touching point (see the shape descriptions). However, do not put in the pin at this point. Now work the other shape, again to the touching point (but again without the last pin). Work the two workers, and pin. Take one of the workers, work it across the other one, and back across its shape's row. Carry on until you finish that shape. Then take the other worker, and work it back across its shape's row, and carry on until that shape is finished as well. Complete the lace between the shapes at the bottom.

It is possible to swap the workers at the touching point if you wish, by taking each worker onwards to the other shape. If you are doing cloth stitch diamonds, and the workers have different colours, then this means that you can colour each half of the diamonds differently! See using colour in Torchon lace.

While working these touching shapes, as the description describes, you have to abandon working a shape half way through while you work on the other shape. You will probably have to tidy the bobbins away to one side as you are not using them. This tends to distort that shape a little, as the passives are not yet anchored by the framing pins. Do not worry. When you continue work on the shape, gently tug the passives straight downwards and everything will return to its original position. Or you could tighten the threads more firmly as each pair leaves the shape. The workers should be firmly tightened at every pin, of course. They are most likely to cause problems, because they change direction abruptly there.