Posts Tagged ‘award medallions’

Remember the award medallions that I was embroidering on and displayed at Pennsic?  I finally got around to starting to make them into actual medallions last night.  

I was taught how to make award medallions aeons ago, one evening sitting around in the barn with a bunch of people at Great Northeastern War.  I actually haven’t seen any made this way here in Aethelmearc, so hey – mine will be very identifiable!  The basic method is:

  1. Cut 2 cardboard circles the size you want the medallion to be
  2. Cut a circle just under 2x the size of the final medallion around the embroidery, and cut a second circle of the same size to make the back.
  3. Stitch around the outside of each fabric circle using running stitch; leave a long tail on the starting end.
  4. Place the cardboard circles in the center of the front & back and use the running stitches to gather the fabric around the cardboard.
  5. Attach the front and back together and edge them in some way.


Step 5 is where things get kind hairy. In the past, I always made a fingerloop braid and sewed it on, stitching the front & back together at the same time.  I tucked the raw ends in and sewed a jump ring on to run a cord through.

This time, though, I decided to get creative… I wanted to try the edge finishing technique described in the Museum of London book, and used on period aumonieres.  I took a class on how to do this technique a 3 ravens a couple of years ago, using fingerloop braid.  I THOUGHT I remembered how to do it, but I was wrong.  So I backed up and decided to try a woven edging.  The basic technique is to put your weft on a needle and use it both to sew the pieces together and as the weft.  This is probably reasonably easy on something biggish like a purse, but it was a major pain on something as small as this (large) medallion.  It was very hard to keep the band even, it pulled the tension of the fabric stretched over the cardboard all out of whack, and balancing the warp tension so that it could wrap around the medallion and yet still have enough to weave effectively.


All of these would have been problems I could have dealt with, though. Where it all went down the tubes was when I got to the end and tried to figure out what to do with the beginning and end of the weaving.  I wanted to lap one end over the other and create a loop with the top one.  But… I just couldn’t get it to work out.  

So… fall back position.  I made a quick six-strand square fingerloop braid and stitched it around the two pieces.  Instead of using a jump ring, I did go with the idea of making a loop from the edging, which was really easy to do and looks a lot nicer, I think.