There really is no such thing as a small sky except, well, maybe in needlepoint.
This stitch is beyond straightforward (pun intended) and is one of the most subtle sky stitches. It would work for a large sky if you really want to minimize the sky.
Start the first column from the opposite side of the column closest to the edge. In this case, I'm starting on the left edge of the canvas so my stitch starts on the right side of the column. This ensure the columns are neat with crisp edges.
As you can see, there is an empty row in between the columns. You can leave it blank or fill the column with Plain Needlepoint. Personally, I like the space blank as it keeps it subtle.
The columns can be the same width or you can vary the width depending on the width of the space to be stitched.
This diagram alternates columns over three rows and over two rows. It's up to you and the space requirements. Find a sequence you like and have fun with it! You could alternate columns over two row and four rows. You could add a third column into the mix and make it over two, over three, over four, over three, over two. The larger the space the more fun you can have with column width sequences.
For whatever reason I can't quite verbalize, I really like this stitch in a lightweight metallic. My go to metallic for skies is Kreinik Metallics Very Fine Braid (#4) on 18-mesh and Fine Braid (#8) on 13-mesh. Petite Silk Lame is a great alternative for both size canvases.
These stitch diagrams, along with other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on www.pinterest.com/whimsicalstitch/whimsicalwednesday.
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 seasonal Melissa Shirley designs. 22 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.