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Detail Inspiration: Rouleau

Rouleau, also known as rouleaux, is a decorative technique involving intricate patterns. It’s often made with bias tape, cording or piping. The designs are predetermined, pinned in place and hand sewn to a backing fabric. They can then be used like appliques on a garment.

Many rouleau designs are Celtic in origin. Of course, your designs can be fantastic swirls or straightforward patterns.

What kinds of designs do you think would look good with this technique? My first thought is to add interlacing loops along necklines, sleeves, or hems. The designs would look beautiful in the same fabric as the garment or really give it some oomph in a contrasting shade.

Have you ever used rouleau? What worked for you?

If not, stay tuned later this week, when Rachel presents a tutorial for making your own!

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

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Caitlin Clark

Caitlin is the Colette Patterns design assistant. You can follow Caitlin at her blog, the story girl.



July 11, 2011 #

Just gorgeous! I adore the top photo – that particular way in which the cording is looped around is just lovely! Beautiful inspiration and can’t wait for the tutorial.


July 17, 2011 #

LOVE this! I can’t wait to try it out!!


July 18, 2011 #

Lovely!!! I must try it.