floral bedfordshire Yvonne Scheele duchesse

I started making lace in 1977 while living in England because I fell in love with antique English bobbins. I learned the usual laces - Torchon, Bedfordshire and Bucks Point—and continued to learn other laces after returning to the Netherlands.

The lace group I attended invited Sister Judith to teach Duchesse lace. Sister Judith told the group she was experimenting with Duchesse and invited us to experiment with her. The result was a lace that had a definite three-dimentional quality. In 1985 this lace was named Withof—the name of Sister Judith’s convent.

Floral Bedfordshire
In 1990 I became involved with Floral Bedfordshire lace with Barbara Underwood. Making Withof and Bedfordshire lace is similar. Each requires the lacemaker to interpret the lace and choose the best techniques.

Combination of Techniques
I have always admired a combination of techniques. It is often successfully executed in embroidery. When I decided to depict a peacock on a cape I envisioned how I could embroider the tail of the peacock. This was the beginning of a new challenge.

I began publishing in 1988, and since have authored or co-authored eight books about lace, including the coffee table book The Beauty of the Orient Painted in Thread.

I began teaching lacemaking in 1981 in the Netherlands, and since have taught in several European countries, South Africa, Australia, Singapore, and the United States. Today, I teach internationally and in my studio in Apeldoorn, The Netherlands. I am fluent in Dutch, English and German. I continue to design and make Withof and Floral Bedfordshire laces—exploring and expanding the boundaries of lace.