Successful crowdfunding launches digital patterns

The idea came from working with a laser cutter in university during my BA course back in 2006, but it is only now I have the knowledge and experience from teaching, and publishing designs, to see the potential of this and how it could benefit many people worldwide. 

I have seen the problems that students face in struggling with the preparation, when all they want to do is get on and make lace.  Pricking patterns carefully and accurately is a very time consuming process and one that puts off many people. They rush the process, make an inaccurate pricking and then their lace is not as good as it could be. I have spent many hours in trying to produce a good pricking (and still sometimes not getting it as good as I would like). Some patterns such as the large collars that I have done have taken up to 20 hours to make the pricking, even the smallest of patterns can take an hour or more to do a good accurate pricking. This process saves a huge amount of time on your part and gives a more accurate pricking to work with, helping to improve your lacemaking. 

Book patterns

All patterns are printed with the markings and then a laser cuts the holes - ready to work. All the pricking and hard work of preparation done for you, as it says - literally ready to put on the lace pillow and start working. The benefits are time saving but more importantly an accurate pattern produced from a digital file, giving you a highly accurate pricking. This reduces the human error of preparation and helps overcome many of the difficulties often experienced in the preparation stage. Includes A5 postcard shown, supplied in biodegradable bag and posted in card backed envelope.

Traditional hand preparation
Laser cut pattern and resulting lace
Close up of laser cut pattern

Crowdfunder and how it worked

The crowdfunder raised money to buy the necessary equipment to produce from the digital file, an accurate and ready to work design pricking, initially from my own published designs, but ultimately to offer the service to other designers, and lacemakers own patterns. 

The money went towards buying the laser cutter, laser printer and associated software, enabling the process to create the ready to work designs. Rewards were offered, giving the opportunity to have the first ready to work patterns off the laser cutter and also the opportunity to experience it first hand, with the chance to create your own design, amongst other exciting rewards. 84 People backed the project, which along with a small grant from the ERDF enabled the project to become a reality.

Crowfunding campaign video

The future

Lacemaking is a heritage craft and by using technology I hope to engage more younger people into the craft,  prolong the participation of existing lacemakers, and help to ensure the craft survives for future generations.


The laser cutter and associated equipment were installed in May 2018 and production commenced during the summer. The patterns will be launched at the Fenland lace Fair on 6th October 2018 and available online from 9th October 2018.


A huge thank you to the contribution you made to this project.

  • Alison
  • Alison Gibbs
  • Ann Allison
  • Anne Newton
  • Anne Wassell
  • Antje González
  • Athene Frisby
  • Beth Marshall
  • Beverly Swain
  • Bonnie Laros
  • Carol Quarini
  • Cheryl Field
  • Chrissy Newby
  • Claire Gordon
  • Dawn Howell
  • Deborah Stone
  • Elisabeth Björklund Böhler
  • Fiona Williams
  • Gabriele Patzner
  • Gail Baxter
  • Gemma Hoyes
  • Gill Stafford
  • Edwina Berridge
  • Heather Harris
  • Helen Morrell
  • Ian Morgan
  • indigocarole
  • Jackie VDZ
  • Janet McGoldrick
  • Janet Ward
  • Jennifer Hayes
  • Jo Fleming
  • Jo Firth
  • Julia Matthewson
  • Julie Browett
  • Julie Enevoldsen
  • Julie Smith
  • Julie Varo
  • June Salmon
  • Justyna Sergiew
  • Kate Patience
  • Katy White
  • Kaye Booth
  • Kim Kerry
  • Kyrie Maxfield
  • Lesley
  • Libby Inglis
  • Linda Legrand
  • Linda Thomas
  • Liz Parkinson
  • Lydia Bend
  • Lynn Korczak
  • Margaret Garlick
  • Maureen Rowe
  • Michelle Long
  • Pat Hallam & Pam Sharples, Roseground
  • Paul Bassi
  • Pauline
  • Pauline Seymour
  • Pittsburgh Lace Group
  • Rita Nelon
  • Ros Jenkins
  • Rose Dee
  • Rosemary Horr
  • Sally Smiddy
  • Sandra Muir
  • Sara Marshall
  • Sarah Gandy
  • scwoodhead
  • Scilla Stevenson
  • Shannon Tague
  • Sheila Hewitt
  • Shirley McFarland
  • Sue Smith
  • Sue Baines
  • The Five Cat Household
  • Tracey Spurgin
  • Tricia Austin
  • Valerie Hunter
  • Victoria Brown
  • Plus 5 anonymous donors.