Monday 24 November 2014

Crafts From Another Era


About 3 weeks ago I had an amazing opportunity to travel with the weaving studio from work to go and visit a Swiss passamentery factory.

Now, I didn't even know what I should understand under passamentery.
I even Googled it with no great results!
Being bilingual helped and I managed to find a Wikipedia description in German which explains that passamenteries are objects which don't themselves have any function other than to serve as a decorative extra to things like clothing, furniture etc.

I was now a little closer but still couldn't really imagine what it was that we would be going to see.

What we got to saw took my breath away.

I couldn't believe that this is something that still is in production!

The two ladies that own this company spent the morning showing us their crafts.

What they make and create are:

Curtain Cords
Furniture Gimps

When they started to show us their wares the first thing that came to mind was how I imagine it to look in the Palace of Versailles!

They create these amazing curtain cords:
(These are images from their product page line-up)

Herma Partner Cords

Herma Partner Cords

And they create them from scratch!

I was quite intrigued to hear that this kind of craft is still alive and well and that they receive many orders from clients who want to either have curtain cords to fit their curtains or furniture gimps to fit their furniture. (For those of you who like me didn't know what a gimp was - it is the narrow band of fabric which you will find attached to antique furniture to enhance the piece, where the fabric ends and the wooden frame begins) Here is an example I found on Pinterest:

Furniture Gimp

Furniture Gimp

The clients do this by sending the company a small piece of the fabric which the ladies use to create the perfect matched piece.
We were then shown how they do this.

The one lady used my scarf I was wearing to find the perfect match in thread.
This exercise was amazing in itself as she chose quite a couple of different pinks blues and greens and combined them to get an absolutely perfect match:

We also watched in amazement as they created an incredible tassle.
What jumped to mind was my youth, my parents had these big poufs that were made from woven fabric. I recall this piece having loads and loads of silky soft tassles all around the bottom of it and I loved playing with them.

It looked something similar to this: (Another Pinterest find :))

At the end of our tour we went into the middle of Lenzburg to find ourselves looking at some amazing Yarnbombing done by the school children of the area:


This ended a fantastic, inspirational morning on a high note for myself :)

Don't you just love learning all about skills that are centuries old but still alive and well in our time?

Do you make use of curtain cords or have antique furniture with all the trimmings?

On that creative note, I wish you a wonderful start to your week.


  1. It's beautiful, istn't it? One of my ancestors was in this business. :-)

    1. Yes Regula, it was really amazing to watch them create all the tassles and bands - stunning!


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