I remember a lot of stitches simply by their stitch sequences, hence the name 5-4-5 for this one.  This is a fantastic background stitch, especially when you want the background to recede just a little bit, but not too much.  It's perfect for many Mary Lake Thompson canvases by Melissa Shirley.

This stitch is easy and quite fun, mainly because it goes so quickly.  I like the wide open feel.  It is ideal for a background, a sky, or a tabletop.  Typically, I do the dark gray lines first, followed by the light gray lines.  My typical thread combo is matte for the dark gray lines and metallic for the light gray and yellow lines.  I like to use two different metallics to define the elements.  I prefer Kreinik Metallics for the light gray lines, largely because they have a variety of braid sizes, allowing me to control the overall impact of the stitch.  For most of these scenarios, I like to use threads with similar color values.

The stitched sample on Instagram provides a work in progress.  It is a background stitch for a Mary Lake Thompson piece using similar color values with matte and metallic threads.  I suspect the end result will include a bead in the intersections.  

With one more step, this stitch changes completely.

By filling the stitch, you expand its possibilities.  This would make an excellent Santa coat or bag, floor, or wallpaper, to name just a few. You can play with the color combinations, especially for Santa, for the different elements.

These stitch diagrams, along with other #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams, can also be found on www.pinterest.com/whimsicalstitch/whimsicalwednesday.  

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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.