Sample Books

Braids & Heritage & Inspiration & Restoration / Reproduction, 20th March 2013

I am extremely lucky to have four very large old sample books. They are crammed with cuttings from all kinds of trimmings and I often get lost in looking through them

When I am looking for more traditional inspiration I am very lucky to have 4 large sample books of trimmings.  They are about 100 years old and I don’t know their origin as they were found in a skip in London and passed to my father many years ago.

The books are about 40cm tall, 30cm wide and 15cm deep – in other words huge. They are packed with samples – unfortunately with no instructions or details of threads used – and I often turn to them for ideas.

Below is a close up photo of one of the braids in the book and my variation of it

Mine is wider and I’ve used cords rather than gimp thread, but I think it looks good.

There are lots of gimp braids in the sample books, but the actual thread is very expensive so I thought I would try to make this design in a different way. The pink braid is the original and my version is in brown on the right. It is made with leather cords.

It doesn’t show up very well in the photo but the leather has a slight sheen to it, which makes this very traditional design look modern and contemporary.

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