This tutorial contains basic information about techniques of soutache embroidery. More experienced readers wishing to extend their skills are welcome to contact me personally :)
To complete one earring (symmetric to the one shown on the photo above, we will need:
- Monofilament threads (thin thread) or regular thread with colour matching soutache string
- Needle, preferably a very thin and very long
- 4 pieces of soutache string in any selected color, the 22 cm each
- 2 pieces of soutache string at 10 cm
- the main stone with a hole through the center of the circumference of no more
than 8 cm (stone in the photo is 3 cm x 1.5 cm)
- 2 beads with a diameter of 7 mm and 6 mm
- 2 mm bead
- About 15 pieces of elongated beads, so-called tubes about 4 mm long
- shoemaker's glue
- a piece of alcantra in color matching the color of earrings (which can be
the sheet of felt or skins)
- pliers to open earwire
- a toothpick to apply glue
- a project of earring
- patience ;)
Fold one of the longer strings (approx. 22 cm) in half (marked by A).
Insert the needle in point B. Repeat with other strings (all of them should be pierced in the same distance from the end).
Sew strings together forming the circuit of the stone (which will be sewn inside).
Sew the stone in inside the strings, connecting starting and ending points (B and C).
Sew the strings in shape of small bead on one side of the main stone.
Sew the small bead in...
and sew dangling strings to the bottom side of earring.
Repeat on another side:
Sew the small bead in
and sew another dangling strings to the bottom.
Cut excess of strings leaving no more than 1 cm from sewing point.
Sew two shorter strings (10 cm long) on the smaller bead's side. Leave enough space for beads which will be sewn in next.
Insert the needle through point E. Put tube bead on the needle and pierce through the strings surrounding the maroon bead.
Put another tube next to the last one. They should touch one another in point F and be about 1 mm apart in point G.
Repeat with another tube beads.
Sew the strings to the main part of earring in point H.
Prepare to sew in another bead by sewing soutache strings together and shaping them appropriately (as a circle matching size of bead).
Sew in the bead.
Sew ends of strings to the backside of the earring in point J.
Earring is almost done. Now we have to hide the ugly back side. Create the contour of the earing on the piece of "Alcantra" fabric.
Cut it out.
Put the glue on the ends of strings - it will stop them from untangling.
Press the piece of "Alcantra" fabric to the back side.
Glue the edges. Be precise and don't use too much glue.
Cut the excess of the material with scissors (tips should be very sharp).
Install the earwire.
Earrings are ready. Congratulations!
At the end it is good to secure them hydrophobic impregnation.