[Basic Instructions for using a Double Lucet]
Click on any picture for a larger view
The lucet, a horn-shaped tool often made from wood, dates back to the Viking era. While I have not been able to formally document the use of a double lucet, the technique is simply a variation on basic luceting, creating a thicker, sturdy, two-color cord, by essentially working two single lucets slotted together perpendicularly.

I acquired my first double lucet at a Pennsic War.
Double Lucet Patterns are available here in PDF or GIF formats.

STEP 1: Slide the two pieces of the double lucet together as shown here.

Keep in mind that you will be using the same basic luceting technique as with one single horn.

Think as though you are working on two single lucets simultaneously, rather than one double lucet. For purposes of these instructions, I will refer to one lucet horn as LUCET A and the other as LUCET B.

You will be working each of the two lucets alternately, with the cord being created where the two working threads intersect (see photos below).

STEP 2: Begin by winding your COLOR #1 yarn on the LEFT horn of LUCET A, back to front. Continue winding the yarn on the RIGHT horn, back to front, and once again on the LEFT horn of LUCET A, back to front. Hold the tail of the yarn firmly against the lucet with your left thumb (or any other available finger) while winding with your right hand.

Next, bring the yarn across to the front of the RIGHT horn of LUCET A. TURN the tool 180 degrees with your left hand.

STEP 3: The process of turning the tool 180 degrees will wind the yarn around it properly. You will have an upper and a lower thread on RIGHT horn of LUCET A. Lift the lower thread over the upper thread to form your first stitch.

To tighten down this stitch, pull the working yarn gently to the right.

STEP 4: Turn the tool 90 degrees. You are now ready to begin working your COLOR #2 on LUCET B. With your second color, repeat STEPs 2-3.

STEP 5: Pick COLOR #1 back up, wrap it front to back over the LEFT horn of LUCET A, and lift the lower yarn on the horn over the upper to form your second stitch of COLOR #1. Repeat with COLOR #2.

[At this point and from now on, you may tighten down your loops by gently tugging on the opposite loop (in this instance the RIGHT loop) on the respective lucet horn, pulling it out away from the horn, (e.g. to the right). This method can allow you to use even tension, thereby creating more consistant stitches, moreso than by tightening the stitches by tugging on the working yarn alone.*
However, the loop on the left horn may get big, and may be tightened down by gently tugging on the working yarn.]

Top View: These pictures shows how the two cords should lay on top if each other if you are looking directly down at the tool.

Repeat STEPS 4-5 until your cord reachs the desired length.

The working yarn that appears to lay on the top of your stitches will alternate back and forth between COLOR #1 and #2 (White and Green).

As you keep turning your lucet tool, alternating from LUCET A to LUCET B, your working yarns will naturally twist on themselves, so be prepared to untwist the working yarns regularly.

When you have reached the desired length, cut your working yarns leaving about a 6 inch tail. Take the cords off both of the horns.

Run the working yarn COLOR #1 through the LEFT COLOR #1 loop and gently tighten down that loop, then run the working thread through the RIGHT COLOR #1 loop and tighten down. Repeat for COLOR #2 (process not pictured here).

Congratulations! You have just completed a DOUBLE luceted cord.

* I had snapped several lucet horns in half by tugging too tightly on the working cord, before Lady Alys showed me this better technique for tightening down stitches.


Bibliography

Fuller, Elaine. Lucet Braiding : Variations on Renaissance Cord. Berkley, CA : Lacis Publications, 1998.

Groves, Sylvia. The History of Needlework Tools and Accessories. London : Country Life, 1966.


Instructions prepared by Lady Lidia Lijovich of Ragusa, lkleovic@carolina.rr.com, January 2002, revised June 2002

Special thanks to Chuck Tubbs and Finniwig Studio [www.Finniwig.com] for donating the lucet seen here.