firenzekat had reminded me of the reinforced eyelet experiment I have been wanting to try out....so finally I did it!
The same prep-steps apply in the first tutorial -
1. Gather all your supplies. In addition to the supplies I mentioned in the first eyelet post, grab your nearest stash of 1/2" solid brass rings. These are the same rings I use on my gowns for lacing. (Oh my precious, precious rings! Last time went to my ring supplier, they had the rings on the discontinued rack. I bought Every. Single. Last. One. I really need to find a new source for rings!)
2. Poke a hole in your fabric (I think, but have not tested my theory that this method would be particularly useful for fabrics that are not condusive to using an awl to make your hole - like taffeta. Next time I need to make eylets in a tight weave fabric, I will be making a hole with a hole punch like I did for my black taffeta kirtle, and then use a ring as a reinforcement.
3. Do a running stitch around the hole. In my sample, I made my stitches the exact same size as the ring. Next time, I will try making the outline just a smidge larger than the ring.
4. Whip around the hole once - doesn't have to be purdy!
5. Go 'round one more time, but this time, it counts - time to make your stitches nice and purdy!
*I yanked and tugged and generally abused this eyelet without any noticable deterioration. It felt nice and strong, although when doing the 'real' thing, I'd probably do one more 'layer' of whipping, either by packing in the stitches tighter, or going around one more time - but that could just be the floss I was using....it didn't feel very dense.
*The ring make a noticable ridge - it almost looked like the whipped grommets of SCA yore. :)
*I really am excited to use this method on a real garment - I think it will work very well and not much harder to construct than a "normal" eyelet. The hardest bit was keeping the ring in place during the first round.