Friday, April 22, 2016

About Soutache: History and Use Through The Ages

WHAT IS SOUTACHE?

Soutache embroidery is a technique which dates back to the fourteenth century in France. Soutache (pronounced SOO-tash), also referred to as Russia braid or Galloon, is a common element in the French art of passementerie, which is a silky braid used to decorate cut fabricThe threads used to make a soutache come in many colors and are often made of natural fabrics such as silk, cotton, rayon and wool. Synthetic, semi-synthetic fibers, and metallic threads of silver or gold may also be used.See more below.

COUTURE:

Soutache was initially used for making decorative elements sewn on haute couture garments.  Cotton caftans and tunics often have soutache embroidery and have been traditionally worn by people all over the world, to include Russia, West Africa and Morocco. Mariachi uniforms, worn by musicians who play music originating from Jalisco, Mexico, are known for their colorful soutache braided designs. 

Court Dress, June 1834:  Evening Dress, circa 1895, satin with multicolored Chinese floral embroidery, pearl and braid trim, and inset chiffon, label: "Mme Marie Reeves, Robes et Manteaux, 52 E. 21 St., N.Y." via KSUM.:  Day Dress   American, 1862–64   White cotton piqué with black soutache: c. 1891 Wool Soutache Jacket:   Wine and Ivory Jacket 1890s:

colettesaintyves:

Evelyn Brent.


MILITARY: 

Metallic soutache has been used for centuries to embellish elaborate military uniforms and epaulets to display rank by width or color of the braid.




Winston Churchill 1895


SOUTACHE PROPERTIES AND MATERIALS:

Soutache is most commonly braided in a herringbone pattern. Two threads are placed on opposite sides of a cord and starting with the left thread is placed over the middle cord followed by the right thread. Then alternating from the right the pattern continues until a braid is formed. This design is called a French herringbone pattern. See samples below.


     


SOUTACHE JEWELRY TECHNIQUE:



The soutache braids are meticulously stitched together with fine needle and threads while combining a variety of cabochons and beads, resulting in an amazing mix of color and style of royal character that is lightweight and comfortable to wear. Since soutache embroidered jewelry is a very precise, laborious and demanding technique, the end result is a unique work of artThere are very few skilled artisans in this technique. They are true masters of their work.

Contact Suzanne today 
to create a luxurious one-of-a-kind design that will be admired and get ready for the compliments. 

"All of my designs are made from high quality materials, Swarovski® pearls and crystals, natural pearls and stones, mother of pearl, corals, Irish and Moroccan Soutache, Italian and Czech glass beads, Japanese seed beads, etc. All are sewn by hand nestled within the  soutache braids, and backed with a luxuriously smooth ultra suede." Suzanne


CARING FOR YOUR SOUTACHE JEWELRY:

Wipe the back of your Soutache jewelry with a soft cloth after wear. If necessary quickly clean in cold water with a drop of laundry detergent, rinse well & pat dry  with a soft dry cloth.

239-776-4000
suber.suzanne@yahoo.com

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