The Order of Arachne's Web is a guild dedicated to making lace, to teaching the several techniques of lacemaking, and to learning more about lacework.

There are three ranks of membership within the Guild:
APPRENTICE: The only requirement for admission to the Order as an apprentice is interest in lacemaking. (There is no badge for apprentices.)
LACEMAKER: (or Member, also called Journeyman) Lacemakers are required to know how to do two forms of lacework. A panel of three Lacemakers or Lacemistresses will examine submitted samples of both forms (need not be finished pieces, just enough to determine reasonable competence in lace type). The applicant will be admitted as a Lacemaker of the Order if the samples display adequate understanding of the techniques. A Lacemaker shall assist the Guild by teaching apprentices when possible, by helping examine the work of applicants for Lacemaker status and by competition in contests on behalf of the Guild. A Lacemaker of the Order may wear the badge which is "Sable, a spider web argent."
LACEMISTRESS/MASTER: The member must know how to do at least four forms of lacework well, can produce excellent pieces in two of them, and has taught lacemaking within the Society and has otherwise served the Guild. Samples of a candidate's four best techniques of lacework will be judged by a panel which includes experts in each of the submitted techniques, if possible. Each sample must be a completed piece, finished appropriately for the intended use. Each candidate will provide evidence of teaching lace within the Society (this may be at own home or at Colegium or other such event, evidence may be a brief written statement of times, places and people taught). Upon receiving this level, the Lacemistress/master shall assist the Guildmistress carry out her duties, especially arranging teaching of apprentices in local area, examining work of applicants for Lacemaker, sponsoring and judging contests, and otherwise promoting interest in lacemaking. Lacemistresses add a silver spider to their badge.

Offices within the Order:
GUILDLEADER: Must be of Lacemaker or Lacemistress rank. Her duties are to organize panels to examine the work of applicants, to keep records of members'; names and ranks attained, to arrange teaching sessions, to organize lacemaking contests, to report as required by Kingdom Law (written report okay, attendance at Kingdom Officers meetings is not required), and to do all within her power to help the Order make a contribution to the Kingdom and to the educational goals of the Society. She may appoint deputies to act for her in Principalities or other Regions within the Kingdom. Guildleaders (and past Guildleaders) add a gold border to the badge appropriate to their rank. A Guildleader will select her own successor, mindful of the good and harmony of the Order. The transfer of the Guildleader office will be announced in the Kingdom newsletter and at the pleasure of the Crown, will take place in Kingdom Court. In order that the Order does not suffer neglect should a Guildleader be unable to carry out her duties or appoint a successor, any past Guildleader of the Order may temporally assume the duties of Guildleader.
ORBLEADER: must be of at least apprentice rank. Her duties are to promote interest in lacemaking in her local area, arrange for the teaching of classes in her local area, get pieces that need to be judged for rank to a panel to be judged.

Awards within the Guild in the Kingdom of the West are:
BADGE OF THE ORDER: Sable, a spider web Argent; a black fabric oval with a white/silver spider web couched on it. This may be represented by a sterling silver spider web medallion (i.e. dream catcher).
RANK OF LACEMISTRESS: A silver spider to hang below the web.
RANK OF ORB LEADER: A fresh water pearl to hang below the Web. This award is given by the Guildleader for 1 year's local or regional leadership, for the teaching of apprentices and others, and promotion of the Guild within the Society.
MARK OF QUEEN'S LACEMAKER: A hematite bead to hang below the Web. This bead is given to those Lacemakers chosen by the Queen, or appointed by the Guildleader to serve as the Queen's personal Lacemaker during her reign. As Queen's Lacemaker, this person shall create one or more personal items as specifically requested by the Queen.
RANK OF GUILDMISTRESS: the Guildmistress shall add a gold border around the badge and retain this addition even if she steps down from office.

The definitions of forms of lace for the Order are based on techniques rather than style or patterns. Not all these styles of lace were known to be done during the SCA period, but if it was so limited, then almost nothing would be done and it is a skill enjoyed by a special few. The definitions of the lace forms are as follows:
BOBBIN LACE: Made by plaiting and interlacing several pairs of threads.
CROCHET: Openwork fabric made by the technique of crochet. Filet crochet is included.
EMBROIDERED LACE: Made by creating reinforced holes in base fabric. Cutwork, drawn work, pulled work, Hardanger are examples of embroidered laces.
KNITTED LACE: Openwork fabric made by the technique of knitting.
MACRAME: Made by knotting several threads.
NEEDLEMADE LACE: Made by working embroidery stitches onto one another.
FILET: Made by first making a foundation by knotting a single thread into a plain net and embellishing the net by embroidery, or by netting a fancy pattern.
SPRANG: Made by interlacing warp threads held rigid on a frame without a weft.
TATTING: Made by knotting a single thread, especially with lark's head knots.
WOVEN LACE: Made on a loom, either by interlacing the warp threads and holding them in place with the weft, or by otherwise making openwork fabric.

Pages webbed by Sabrina de la Bere 8/06