Equipment can be as cheap or as expensive as you are willing to pay. You can pick up bobbins as cheap as $1.00 each and make your own pillows. Borrow books and patterns from friends or the local library and if you are part of the guild, most states have books you can borrow. So what equipment do you need. A good firm pillow, round or square, it does not matter. Pins, threads and some Bobbins will see you get started. In time your tools may expand to include lazy susans, fine crochet hooks, pin pushers and pullers, knitting holders, divider pins, bookmark covers, fan stick, you get the picture but a pillow, some pins, a bit of thread, some bobbins and an easy pattern to start with, is all you need. Some of the patterns in this section are a great starting point!
The Basic Stitches
There are only two movements you will need to learn. The first is called a cross and the second s is called a twist. Depending on where and how many crosses and twists you make, you can make many different stitches. Roseground, spiders, edgings, fans, they are all made using just these two movements. Honiton, Bedforfordshire, Torchon or Bucks lace, all made with the two basic movements.
You will only use two pair of bobbins at a time for each stitch, that is 4 bobbins. Even if you have 100 pairs on your pillow, each stich only requires two pair at a time.
A Whole Stitch is made with a Cross, a Twist and a Cross.(CTC) In Europe it is known as a linen stitch. Number your 2 pair (4 bobbins with thread) from 1 to 4. A cross is made by taking bobbin 2 over bobbin 3. Renumber your bobbins then simultaneously take bobbin 2 over 1 and bobbin 4 over 3. This is a Twist. Renumber again and do another cross (2 over 3)
A Half Stitch is made up with a Cross and a Twist. (CT) Start with a Cross (2 over 3), renumber and finish with a Twist (2 over 1 and 4 over 3 simultaneously).
A Whole Stitch and Twist is made up with a Cross, Twist, Cross and Twist. (CTCT) It is aslo know as a Whole Stitch in Europe.
Practice without having to renumber them. It will come with time.
Where Can I Learn?
The best place to start is in your local State group.