So, since I got one picture to go through, I'm going to try to break the GST post into two, one right after the other (sort of).
By the way, I apologize if anything is lost in the pictures - I had to reduce them considerably so my intarwebs service could handle the uploads. The text part of the posts isn't the problem - I compose them in word before I upload - but the pictures need to be uploaded into the post (thanks, LJ!), and it takes a while with Verizon Broadband.
And I apologize for crappy formatting - it's the service, not me. All my bits aren't agreeing with each other.
I finished the GST on the first sleeve piece - it looks great, but it took me about half-way through the sleeve before I really hit my stride and smoothed out my technique with the gilt silk twist. It behaves differently from regular silk, so if you try and stitch it in the same way as the regular silk, it tangles, breaks, and behaves badly. The gilt is very delicate, and likes to break when you're least expecting it, so I worked on minimizing the stress on the thread as much as possible.
Because I like y'all, here's a small photo essay on how I did it.
I'm assuming people reading this know how to do detached buttonhole stitch - I'm doing the version that goes back and forth, rather than the version that works from one side only over a straight thread. If you don't know, and you're interested, do go look it up - it's a great stitch, and ubiquitous in 16th and early 17th century embroideries.
Anyway, the back and forth style of buttonhole stitch can look very lacy and open if you work it using the same technique as regular silk:
While this is a fine look, it puts great stress on the thread, and it can result in big holes in the stitching if you're not careful. Also, tangles and breaking.
In contrast, here is the same motif worked in the gentler technique:
As you can see, it's a lot denser.
Now That I've whetted your appetite, here's Part 1 of how I did it:
1. Start your stitch by pushing the needle through the previous line:
(Here I am finishing up a leaf on the sleeve.)
2. Pull the needle through and about 2" of thread. using your thumb and forefinger, pull the remaining loop of thread taut so that it is not twisted:
Part 2 will be in the next post. Think of them as one post with an intermission.
(I'll open comments on the second post, basically so I don't get confused. I'm a simple creature.)