The Saint Augustine Chalice Veil is made from Silk Dupioni, which is a great option for black vestments used on Good Friday. Silk Dupioni is a good fabric choice for church vestment making because it looks rich, has a natural sheen, and a depth of color. Combining a solid fabric with a patterned orphrey allows the vestment to be visible from more than the first few rows of church pews.
To test a pattern for a Chalice Veil at Ecclesiastical Sewing, red silk dupioni was used for the face fabric, satin for the lining, and Evesham brocade for the orphrey band, trimmed with Saint Benet trim. The process involved measuring, cutting, and adding the orphrey band and trim. Basting the trim before sewing helped ensure it stayed straight. After completing the orphrey band, it was stitched to the silk, a cross was applied with an iron, and the lining was hand-stitched. The final result is a beautiful Chalice Veil in the Saint Gregory Collection of Vestments.
Altar linens serve distinct liturgical functions: Fair Linen covers the altar, Corporal holds vessels, Pall a square linen stiffened with either cardboard or plexiglass. Purificator a small square linen used to wipe the communion vessels during the sacrament, Lavabo Towel dries hands, Credence Cloth covers a side table, Chalice Veil conceals post-communion, Cere Cloth protects from dampness, Dust Cloth safeguards Fair Linen, and Sick Call Set facilitates individual communion.
Chalice veils are very simple to construct. The beauty of the finished piece lies in excellent workmanship construction techniques and appropriate design placement. The design of a chalice veil can be as simple or elaborate as the imagination allows. Although the chalice veils do not have any trim around the edge, it is appropriate to use a cord as a decorative finish at the seam. Chalice veils often have a cross motif placed on the front edge too.
The orphrey trim for the chalice veil had been planned and cut to size and position based on the use of the black Passion Cross. The idea was to place the black motif on a gold motif so it would be more visible. The center of the orphrey was located and matched to the center of the design on the black Fairford Fabric.
Ecclesiastical Brocatelle fabric for the Ash Wednesday and Good Friday Vestment set has a pattern repeat. But not a tiny, regular pattern repeat. It is a whopping 17″ pattern repeat. There is a tiny arrow at the point or peak of the gold border which is an Ogee pattern. This fabric also has a pattern repeated on the width which is easily determined by measuring the distance between the two black dots located at the base of the gold frame.
Making the Chalice Veil – a simple item to make is a chalice veil. The dimensions of the chalice veil can vary. The size used for my church is 24″ square. To keep the project simple, a plain fabric can be selected, But for now lets take a look pattern designs in the Fairford, there are two main motifs: the Pineapple and the Ogee. The pineapple motif was selected as the central motif on this chalice veil. The two crossed pins mark the center of the pineapple. The pattern design in Fairford makes it easy to match the same motif point to obtain straight and even lines for cutting.
The Passion Cross – Church Symbolism by F.R. Webber
– This is a cross whose ends are cut to points. It is also known as the Cross Urdee, and the Cross Champain, sometimes the Cross Pointed. It represents the sufferings of our Lord and has been called by some authorities the Cross of Suffering. If pictured as rising out of a chalice, it represents our Lord’s agony in the Garden of Gethsemane. It may be used as a symbol of Maundy Thursday, or of Good Friday.
Alethea Wiel, a skilled Ecclesiastical Artisan from 1894, designed a Chalice Veil rich in symbolism. The illustration includes a chalice on seven rocks representing the Seven Sacraments, with the Nativity engraved on the chalice. Angels, Luke, and John surround Christ, while the reverse side showcased the Crucifixion with angels shielding their eyes. A vine, symbolizing Christ, intertwines throughout the design.
Weekend thoughts on Church Sewing: Looking at a Chalice Veil design from “Design for Church Embroidery” by R.A. Alethea Wiel. It has an Agnus Dei and four angels, each symbolizing something. The balanced design, shapes, and careful placement make it beautiful. Thinking about its artistry makes us wonder about true beauty in modern designs and what we can learn. Also, seeing the design in Or Nue embroidery on different platforms adds a touch of history.
Welcome to Ecclesiastical Sewing! This site is dedicated to a passion for designing and creating Church Linens, vestments, and ecclesiastical embroidery projects. With a background in costume design, there’s exploration of couture and custom sewing techniques for Church Vestments. Stay tuned for updates on ongoing projects, Ecclesiastical Embroidery Designs, and tips for creating your own Church Vestment Projects.