Fun with Soutache

 

Soutache kumihimoIn recent years traditional soutache or russian braid has undergone a complete transformation. Where once it was used to conceal seams or decorate uniforms, now it is more commonly found in ornate jewellery designs. It is combined with beads and cabochons and stitched to backing fabric to create swirling, multi-layered creations of amazing complexity. When I was offered some soutache to work with in a kit from Jewellery Maker I jumped at the chance. I wanted to show different ways of using this versatile braid. One of the designs was a traditional stitched design, but two other pieces were made using glue. I used the Hypo Cement Fabric Glue, which is very reliable and easy to use. The precision applicator delivers tiny drops, which are perfect for this sort of work. It allowed me to make a very neat and smooth frame for the stone and then worked up into a lovely kumihimo braid, which worked perfectly as a bail, a bracelet and even earrings.

I have just posted the instructions for these designs on the site and they can be found here.

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