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Pea

Spider

I am not sure what the difference is between an open sider and a pea, or what lace tradition these belong to. I copied this from a book of lace stitches, and I'm not even sure that I got it right! It's very complicated, and I think I'd advise using a open spider with square hole instead. See pattern 202.

Pattern for open spider with square hole
Pattern (left). I prefer marking in where the pairs go (right).

You can see that the spider fits within a diamond of pins. Unlike solid areas, you do work up to and including these surrounding pinholes before starting on the spider. The threads from the points of the diamond of pins are not actually involved in the spider at all.

Please note that unlike a conventional spider, there is no central pin at all. There are four pins to hold the hole open.

I can't really figure this out myself! So I am not sure how to do more or less pairs. By the way - the diagram below doesn't really show the hole. It was hard enough to show where all the threads went!

This diagram shows each thread as a line. The stitches used in this spider are twist single pair, cloth stitch and (occasionally), cloth stitch and twist and Torchon ground stitch. The details of each stitch are not shown in detail below - follow the links in the previous sentence if you are not familiar with them.

Spider

Repeat Step Back

Working: First work all lace above the spider, down to and including, the framing pins.

Work out the pairs that will form the spider. This example has 8 pairs. Twist each pair once or twice.

Work the middle two pairs (red) in cloth stitch and twist, pin, and then cloth stitch after the pin. Now work each of the (red) pairs through the next two pairs outwards on each side (blue and green).

Work the (new) middle two pairs in cloth stitch. These are blue.

Work the green pairs across all other pairs inside them (including each other) until they reach the pin on the other side - all this in cloth stitch. Pin (both sides). Then work the same pair back to the middle in cloth stitch (but they do not work across each other).

The blue pairs work across all pairs outside of them in cloth stitch. The last stitch of this will be with the outermost pair. This last stitch is not a cloth stitch, but a Torchon ground stitch, complete with its pin. The blue pair has now left the pea, and is replaced with the yellow pair.

This yellow pair works across the pair inwards (red), in cloth stitch.

The middle two pairs (green) work outwards through all other pairs (except the blue pair which has left the pea, remember?) Pin. Work the green pair across all pairs (including each other) until they reach the other side. Again, the blue pairs are not involved. The green pairs now leave the pea.

The yellow pair are now in the centre. Work them across the remaining red pairs in cloth stitch. The yellow pair leave the pea.

The red pairs work together as a Torchon ground stitch.

Now all the pairs have left the pea, they are all worked in the faming stitches (ground or whatever).

Phew!

I think that the idea is roughly as follows:
The pea is symmetrical, so I will only consider half of it (vertically).
The pair at the middle of the pea (red) just outlines the pea - making the shape of the pea pod, I suppose.
While technically there are 4 pairs (on each side), the edge pair (yellow) is not involved in the top half of the pea at all. Its sole function is to swap over with one of the other pairs (blue), and get involved in the bottom half.
So that leaves two pairs, blue and green. These cross over each other, like the top half of a conventional spider.
The green pair continues on to go round the top side pin on the other side, and back to the centre (but staying the other side). This is what shapes the central hole of the pea.
The blue pair crosses the outline pair (red) and then swaps over with the edge pair (yellow), and leaves the pea. This is what attaches the side of the pea to the rest of the lace.
Both sides are worked at the same (as they are symmetrical).
The bottom is the same as the top, except in reverse, and the yellow pair has replaced the blue.