Never Too Early

It's never too early to work on holiday projects, especially since we in the needlepoint world have done an excellent job of creating and sustaining the need for ornaments for every season.  I would argue we created seasons for ornaments.  (I'm looking at you St. Patrick's Day.)

The next two weeks will focus on cute stitches on a holiday project from a stitching friend of mine.  Today's stitch is a variation of what I consider a classic, the Tied Upright Cross.  By leaving a row in between the crosses on all sides, you have an opportunity for a cute accent.

The diagram includes two possibilities, a bead over two rows on the vertical or a small upright cross.  The stitched sample illustrates the bead in all the intersections.  You can use one or both accents.  It's completely up to you.

Speaking of the stitched sample, it uses Planet Earth Silk, Kreinik Metallics, and Sundance Beads.  

The thread combinations are kinda countless as it completely depends on how sparkly (or not) you want it to be.  A matte variation could include Very Velvet (gray lines) tied down with Rainbow Linen (black lines) with a matte Delica bead as the accent.  I think that would make an adorable whimsical basket.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  35 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Beyond Bling

Who says you have to use threads to create a pattern?

That darn Melissa Shirley combined threads and beads to create a beautiful pattern on a vase recently.  What was so striking about this combo is that the beads did virtually all of the heavy lifting.  Take a look.

Here's a diagram I mapped out based on the above.  It's a tiny bit different as I didn't want the Herringbone effect with the single thread.

You could also eliminate the thread altogether and still create a pattern.  That said, for this example, it is best you are not a member of #teamfullcoverage.

You could absolutely fill the open space with vertical straight stitches or even a tied Upright Cross.  That said, I just love the idea of an open diamond pattern with nothing but beads.  It would be perfect for a vase, medium to small body of water, or even a flower.  

These stitch diagrams, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  34 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Tiny with a Powerful Punch

In case you were wondering, yes, you can get three different fibers into a small decorative stitch.  

On most days, I choose a stitch pattern to fill a space, rarely the other way around.  Today's stitch is an exception as this stitch came to be as a result of how a canvas was specifically painted.  As I mapped it it out, I realized it had many applications and decided to share it with you.  An offset 2X3 rectangle is the heart of this stitch.  Three different accents are provided on the diagram.  Select one (or more) that fits your mood! 

This stitch is a great way to draw attention to a small area.  The needlepoint world has done a great job in creating ornaments for every season.  This stitch would make a great coat or bag for Santa on a Christmas ornament, a great basket for a Spring ornament, or even water on a Summer ornament.  As I mapped out the diagram, I could not stop thinking about using this in a 4th of July piece, so I stitched a tiny sample to demonstrate the color combination possibilities.

This stitch is a great way to draw attention to a small area.  The needlepoint world has done a great job in creating ornaments for every season.  This stitch would make a great coat or bag for Santa on a Christmas ornament, a great basket for a Spring ornament, or even water on a Summer ornament.  As I mapped out the diagram, I could not stop thinking about using this in a 4th of July piece, so I stitched a tiny sample to demonstrate the color combination possibilities.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides and stitch concepts for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  34 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Up (or Down) We Go!

Today's stitch is a great way to add direction to your space.  While the theme of nature carries over from last week, this more subtle stitch is on a much smaller scale.

There's a certain elegance to it that I love.  Let's start with going up!

Diagonal Stairs 1.jpg

I love how the alternating stitch widths (over two or three rows) add a gentle directional element to this stitch.  I skipped a row between columns to add definition but it would certainly work with no skipped rows.

Going down is just as pretty.

As this is a smaller stitch, I didn't add compensation stitches (unlike other #whimsicalwednesday diagrams).  This allows the pattern to be clearer.  

As I look at the diagrams, this is a great stitch for mirror patterning, such as wings on opposite sides of an angel.  It would also work for a tail.  (Am I the only one who sees a whale tale in the second diagram?  If not, please know this was not intentional.)

I played with some Mandarin Floss on 18-mesh for the stitched sample.  It would be fine to add a metallic or contrasting color on the rows in between but it is also pretty just by itself.

These stitch diagrams, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  34 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Separation Issues

Today's stitch bounced around my social media feeds for a few weeks. I avoided it at all costs because it confused me and I don't use a lot of overtly diagonal stitches.

Then it showed up again and I gave in and had to dissect it.  Separation issues were a good thing here, as once I separated it into two distinct steps, it was clear...at least for me.

Take a look at the final product first and think about how you would break it down.

FullSizeRender 3.jpg

Did you think to do it in one ongoing stitch?  That's what I couldn't get my head around.  So, I broke it down into two steps and everything came together.  

The diagram uses two colors to indicate the two steps which, in my opinion, makes it easier to navigate.  (Note: most of my stitch diagrams use multiple colors.  While this can often be interpreted as a second [or third] thread, it also denotes steps within a diagram.)

The stitched sample on Instagram illustrates the two steps with one thread.  

The stitched sample uses Gloriana Silk Floss for a sky.  This stitch makes a great sky (obviously), especially one you want to stand out.  For the same reason, this stitch works well for water or ground cover.  There is a strong directional element, as well as a certain drama surrounding the stitch, making it perfect for nature.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Spring into April

Happy April!  This month will be a hodgepodge of stitch stuff with no overarching theme other than my stitching stream of consciousness.

And, as things would have it, we begin the month with a #smallspacesunday.  Today's stitch is a variation on a recent #smallspacesunday.  To illustrate how you can always make similar stitches look vastly different, today's version includes a bead.

The bead brings a certain gravitas to this small stitch.  It would also be great way to make areas on small canvases pop, such as clothing or wrapping paper on small ornaments.  The stitch is also especially appropriate for a small waterway or a waterway in the distance.   Have fun with it!

The diagram includes a slightly different beading technique.  Today's technique is called Vertical Cross Stitch Beading.  You attach the bead twice, from opposite directions, over the same intersection to keep the bead centered and straight.  The net result is the bead's center hole will be parallel to the vertical row versus a 45-degree angle.  It's a subtle difference, but a nice touch.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Pot-Pourri

Today's stitch is a hybrid of all good things...a tied stitch, a Scotch stitch, and a Hungarian stitch.  

I love this stitch largely because it challenges even my own pre-conceived notions about stitches.  I'm a traditionalist at heart, yet here I am using a stitch combining three distinct stitch types (Hungarian, Scotch, and Crosses) and loving every second of it.  Last month, we cobbled together small stitches to create a large, open pattern.  Here we are combining stitches to create a full coverage stitch.  My point is to not be afraid to combine and add stitches.   The end result is often spectacular.

This is certainly not a stitch for anything and everything.  It would make a great coat or dress, basket or bag, eye catching section of a sampler or, as the stitched sample illustrates, a flower pot.  This is a stitch that commands attention and you want to use it in an area where you want to draw attention to.

For the stitched sample, I combined complementary colors and finishes to create a bold statement for the pot, including Fyre Werks, Impressions, and Planet Earth Silk Floss.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Dressing Up!

Today's stitch is from a dress, hence the very clever blog title name.  Honestly, it's a universal stitch that finds its roots in the Star Octagon.

Typically, when I have open spaces with differing shapes, I fill only one.  In this case, we have a 2X2 square and a 2X2 diamond and both are filled with an upright cross.  If left to my own devices, I would have filled just the 2X2 square.  Yet, despite my love of open work, I acknowledge there are times full coverage will only do.  And this dress needed full coverage.

The stitched sample uses Vineyard Silk and Shimmer Ribbon on 18-mesh.

As I mentioned earlier, this is a great universal stitch.  I can see it on a basket with Sea Grass or Silken Straw (to be really fun) and almost any piece of clothing.  It could be a wonderful wall or tabletop.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Sail #2

With multiples of the same item on a canvas, I find I number them from left to right and simply name the stitch with that fancy name plus its corresponding number.  Hence, we have "Sail #2."  I did a little research and determined it's really a Reverse Hungarian, though it will always be Sail #2 or 3-2-3 to me.

3-2-3.jpg

I admit to overuse of Woven Hungarian, so this is a great alternative for a small space where you want to add some contrasting finishes or colors.  The stitched sample on Instagram is the aforementioned Sail #2 in all of its sailing glory and uses Fyre Werks and DMC Floss (on 13-mesh).  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Wait. What?

Your eyes are not deceiving you.  Today's stitch is a traditional diagonal stitch.  I like the size of this stitch and, more importantly, it added the necessary movement to the object on the canvas .

It's a simple pattern.  A group of three stitches over two rows, followed by a group of four stitches over three rows (centered against the adjacent group), and repeat.  I chose this stitch for the body of a horse to add dimension and direction to the body as well as make it smooth (hence the larger stitches).  

For an animal body, I recommend any good wool.  We used Rainbow Gallery Persian Wool for the project above.  Vineyard Merino Wool would be a great choice, as well as Bella Lusso or Burmilana.  

This stitch would also work really well on water or a sky.  In either of those cases, I recommend skipping a single row in between the horizontal rows for a lighter effect.  (And, yes, I just snuck in an open stitch...sorry!)

Today's stitched sample is me playing with two plies of Floche on 18-mesh.  The only thing missing is a Pina Colada.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  32 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Sometimes Simple is Best

Yes, I know.  Technically, this is not a full coverage stitch, as in "full" full coverage stitch.  The spirit is full coverage, so I included it this month.  I really like this stitch as it is a great horizontal alternative to a Cashmere stitch.   It's simple yet there is still little snap to it.

I recommend adding the X's first (the black lines), followed by the aqua lines.  (Here's a refresher on Continental, should you want it.)  The stitched sample on Instagram is stitched with Floche (2-ply) on 13-mesh.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Cousins

This month's first #smallspacesunday is a cousin of one of my go-to small stitches.  It's the exact same concept, simply over five rows (instead of three) and on the horizontal (instead of vertical).

Horizontal Elongated Crosses.jpg

There's nothing overly complicated about this stitch.  I recommend adding the aqua lines first, followed by the gray lines.  The beauty of this stitch, whether it is on the horizontal or vertical axis, is it works well on any narrow space.  It would make a fantastic door or panel in wallpaper.  It would also make a great ground cover, especially with contrasting colors or finishes.  

The stitched sample on Instagram is from my stitch guide for Emma Williams' Rooftops.  It uses DMC Floss and Neon Rays on 13-mesh.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  30 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Hello March!

There are some people who are happy to see you!  To cleanse (some) palettes, the month of March is dedicated to full-coverage stitches.  

Today's stitch finds its inspiration in color ratios.  A little bit of background for you...I was presented with a beautifully painted roof with no clear pattern nor clear lines separating the two beautiful colors.  It was a conundrum as I did NOT want to do an open stitch (as there were plenty of open stitches in the piece already).  So I focused on the colors.  I determined how much pink versus how much brown and started playing with stitches that would accomplish this ratio.  I landed on the following.

The stitched sample uses Threadworx Overdyed Floss, Splendor, and Flair.  A laying tool is a huge help to keep the floss untangled and smooth.  My embroidery hero, Mary Corbet, has a great video on how to use a laying tool.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

How Do You Like Them Apples?

Our last open stitch for the month is from a single subject canvas.  I mention this because the space this stitch covered was huge.  It is so huge, in fact, today's diagram is a smaller scale than the actual stitch.

The piece is a retired Melissa Shirley canvas with a single apple.  (As a side note, this is the canvas that started me down my path of fruit canvas obsession.)  Truth in advertising dictates I share Wendy Harwood of Aristeia helped me craft this stitch for the apple.

It was the perfect stitch to show off the shading.

Honestly, I recommend adding the dark gray lines first.  Tie them down (dark aqua lines) at the intersection.  Add the light aqua lines last.  

You will see the stitched sample is on an even larger scale.  The diagram illustrates the center element (light aqua lines) as over 2-2-2-6-6-6-2-2-2 rows.  The center element on the stitched sample is over 4-4-4-8-8-8-4-4-4 rows with the diamond grid moved accordingly.  It still grazes the far right and far left stitches at the same points, regardless of the size of the center element.  

The gray lines are DMC Pearl #5.  Both aqua lines (light and dark) are Kreinik Metallics Tapestry Braid (#12).  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Oops

Technically, today's stitch is a mistake.  What my eyes saw in the stitch book and what my hands wrote on the graph paper were two different things.  So it goes.  My best needlepoint girlfriend assured me that she liked my version better.

As much as I would like to name this the Mistake Stitch, technically it is an Alicia's Lace Variation.

I used this stitch for the pink and turquoise hills in Emma Williams' "The Cottage," distributed by Melissa Shirley.  I wanted an understated stitch because the mountains were in the deep background, but I also wanted to bring attention to them singularly because of their gorgeous color.  So, between this stitch and Lorikeet, I'm hoping it all comes together!

The diagram is in two colors for clarity.  That said, it would be great to use two threads with different finishes to make it pop a little more.  It would be fun in two threads for a small coat, flower, Santa bag, or hat.  Even a small fruit.  (Yes, I can always bring a stitch back to fruit.)  This stitch would also be great with a lightweight Kreinik Metallic on windows or water.

The stitched sample on Instagram is me playing with this stitch on a stitch guide in progress for an event this summer.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

Enjoy!

Pretty as a Peach

Today's stitch is a denser variation of the Elongated X's I shared with you last September.   

Just as the original post, this stitch is up six rows and over two.  Tying down the X's with three horizontal stitches over two rows is a way to brighten it up for the peach that inspired this post.

As you can see, thread weights play a huge role in the openness of this denser stitch.  I used size 8 DMC Pearl Cotton and size 8 Kreinik Metallics, resulting in an almost full coverage stitch looking barely there.  And, for certain artists, this is the way to stitch.  There is some beautiful shading out there.  There are times I feel guilty covering it up.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you enjoy this stitch and have the perfect spot for it!  Enjoy!

Orange You Glad I Didn't Say Banana?

One of the WORST knock-knock jokes ever.  But, it was the first thing that came into my head as I plotted this post.  Because, um, today's stitch comes from an orange on one of my Melissa Shirley fruit pillows.  

For those of you whom open work makes you itch, this may be a stitch for you.  It is very, very close to full coverage.  The choice of lighter weight threads reinforce the open look.  Here's the stitch.

It's a 3X3 diamond with a Smyrna Cross in the diamond intersections and a Tied Upright Cross in the diamond centers.  

Thread weights are critical for the open effect of this stitch.  The stitched sample on Instagram drives home my point.

In the Instagram sample, the dark gray lines are a size 5 Pearl Cotton, the aqua lines are a size 8 Kreinik Metallics, and the turquoise lines are Frosty Rays.  If you are #teamfullcoverage, consider a heavier Pearl Cotton or even a single strand silk such as Vineyard Silk or Pepper Pot for the dark gray lines.  Increase the weight of the Kreinik Metallic to a size 12 or size 16 and I think you might be just as happy with this stitch.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  31 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch.  Enjoy!

Short & Wide

I can be overly focused on the traditional view of perfectly diagonal stitches (45 degrees) in needlepoint.  It's also clear I'm overly comfortable with straight stitches, as illustrated here, here, and here.  So, yes, I can get bored with myself, I mean my stitches.

This is when oblique stitches save the day.  The beauty of oblique stitches is they are often the perfect stitch for that odd-shaped space.  Today's stitch is a chevron stitch with oblique stitches and a skipped row.

Oblique Chevron.jpg

This stitch would be just perfect for receding landscape (mountain or greenery in the background), water, or sky.  Those are just some thought-starters.  The skipped row is essential here as it lightens the stitch and helps with the shading.  The subtlety here is beautiful.  Despite being minimalist, it makes you look twice.

The stitched sample on Instagram is me playing with threads for a background of a floral piece from Melissa Shirley.  I used Elegance and Crystal Braid on 18-mesh.

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  30 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch.  Enjoy!

My Favorite Technique

#teamopenstitches

February focuses on open stitches from pillows on display in my front window for 15+ years as well as a stitch I accidentally created by not transferring a diagram correctly.  (Seriously.)

A little background.  When I returned to the world of needlepoint, I was #teamfullcoverage for several years. I could not get my head around what I called "naked canvas."  Oh, how wrong I was.  Without a doubt, it took some coaxing and hand-holding.  Here I am, twenty-some years later, I can't imagine a single piece of needlepoint I've stitched, or am stitching, without the dreaded...I mean gorgeous...naked canvas.  It's about balance, focus areas, and symmetry.  

I begin with the Pomegranate Stitch.  I have no other name for it.  This is because the stitch is comprised of several small stitches that create a gorgeous pattern and I used it on a pomegranate.  Makes sense, right?

The first diagram is the first group of stitches that would be fine just as they are, especially with a piece with gorgeous shading.

But, no.  I needed more stitches, so I added an Upright Cross (the light gray lines) inside the small diamonds.

Was that the end?  Of course not.  More oblique layered crosses were added.  And some tiny Mosaic stitches.

The stitched sample on Instagram reflects the final diagram.  I included all three steps because I wanted to make a point.  Any of these three combinations work as a group of stitches.  Truth be told, if I re-stitched this piece today, I would stitch it with the middle diagram so I could have more naked canvas.

It's all a matter of taste and your desired coverage level.  What is universal, regardless of which diagram you prefer, is the threads.  When doing open work, it's important to integrate thread weight into the equation.  Generally speaking, I choose lighter weight threads as a secondary way to let the shading show through.  Case in point, I used size 5 pearl cotton and size 12 Kreinik Metallics Tapestry Braid on 13-mesh for the pomegranate.  I would even use size 8 pearl cotton and size 8 Kreinik Metallics on 13-mesh to make a point.  It works, I promise.  And, as with all things needlepoint, it is all a matter of taste.  So, experiment to find what works for you.

These stitch diagrams, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  30 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!

Just the Beginning

I was desperately seeking an open, lightweight background for an upcoming stitch guide series (for a group of adorable standups...more to come soon, I promise!)

Today is an example of Pinterest (or any stitch book or stitched piece) providing the catalyst for a stitch.   This pin was the beginning of something wonderful.  I expanded it beyond the original diagram because I needed the additional space for the snowflakes (Smyrna Crosses).  

2017 Pavilion Flower Variation.jpg

The stitched sample on Instagram goes for a lighter touch, using only two plies of Splendor for the flowers (on 18-mesh).  If you want fuller coverage, use four plies of any strandable silk or cotton floss on 18-mesh and six strands on 13-mesh.  A laying tool is critical here to keep the individual strands flat and untangled.  

This stitch diagram, along with all other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on a Pinterest board here.

Be sure to follow whimsicalstitch.com on FacebookPinterestInstagram, and Twitter.

If you like what you see on this blog, want to learn some very creative decorative stitches, and how to put them all together, whimsicalstitch.com sells stitch guides for Melissa Shirley Designs, Zecca Designs, and Patience Brewster.  30 guides are currently available, including two new guides from Patience (here and here), and more are in the pipeline.  My events page includes teaching events at stores I will be visiting over the next few months.  More events are in the works and the events page will always include the latest available information.

I hope you have the perfect spot for this stitch!  Enjoy!