Open Squares

I created* today's stitch for a beginning student.  It was a great way give the student practice with the Continental stitch, stretch them a little bit with an easy decorative stitch, and add an element of style to the piece.  Win, win, win!

Click on image to see on whimsicalstitch.com's Pinterest account. Visit pinterest.com/whimsicalstitch/whimsicalwednesday for a library of all #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams.

Click on image to see on whimsicalstitch.com's Pinterest account. Visit pinterest.com/whimsicalstitch/whimsicalwednesday for a library of all #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams.

Click on image to see on whimsicalstitch.com's Instagram account. Visit instagram.com/whimsicalstitch to see a library of stitched samples for select #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams.

Click on image to see on whimsicalstitch.com's Instagram account. Visit instagram.com/whimsicalstitch to see a library of stitched samples for select #whimsicalwednesday and #smallspacesunday stitch diagrams.

The student used this stitch for the background of a cute little animal.  You could add a Rhodes square in the 3X3 intersection for a smoother corner. The stitched sample is a background on a Scott Church Creative piece (in progress). It includes DMC Perle Cotton, Flair, and Trebizond Silk. This stitch is wide open.  Use that openness to exploit beautiful canvas painting.  This stitch could help define a grassy area or help highlight the painting in a beautifully shaded tablecloth.  Don't be afraid to use a contrasting color for any of the threads.  Have fun with thread finishes and color!

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. 47 guides are currently available, including the brand new Decisions, Decisions, Passion Flowers and Royal Peeps, and more are in the pipeline.

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

* Note on "creating:"  This stitch may very well exist in a book or on another site.  I can't pretend that I'm the first person to think of any stitches I share with you.  I say "I created it" because I haven't stumbled across this stitch anywhere.

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!

I Feel Like I'm Cheating

Technically, this is nothing more than traditional, plain, old-fashioned, tent stitch, half tent stitch, or whatever you call it needlepoint.  But alternating finishes in Plain Needlepoint is a fantastic way to brighten up a small space.

The diagram below is a 3-in-1 diagram, illustrating three ways to make this work for your space.

The stitched sample on Instagram illustrates the diagram on the far left.

This is a Meredith Collection Monogram pillow I'm working on.  With so many small spaces and the added complexity of geometric shapes, very simple needlepoint is called for, in my opinion.  (And it's a perfect easy stitch piece.)

I combined different finishes in the same color family.  The Alternating Tent Stitch is also a great way to combine colors, especially for dramatic small spaces.  (I'm thinking Halloween with alternating orange and green stripes.)  And, just for the record, I stitched a space with one thread type at a time, meaning I ended up doing a lot of continental stitches on the vertical.

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 and Zecca Designs.  28 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

Enjoy!

The Smallest of All

At the heart of all needlepoint is the single, simple needlepoint stitch.  There are several names for what I call Plain Needlepoint.  You may see it called Plain Needlepoint, Tent, Basketweave, Half Tent, Continental, or combinations of those.  They are all variations of the same theme, specifically a single stitch laid diagonally (at a 45 degree angle) over an intersection from the lower left corner to the upper right corner.

Simply put, the methods vary in sequence, coverage, and look on the back of the canvas.  However, they all look the same on the front of the canvas.  The Continental and Basketweave are the two primary methods I use for Plain Needlepoint.  I recommend each for specific applications.

Basketweave is my primary and preferred method.  It provides consistent and even coverage on both the front and back of a canvas.  In addition, basketweave minimizes the need for blocking a canvas after it has been stitched.    

Basketweave.jpg

Beginning in the upper right corner, add a stitch.  Move to the row to the left and begin the second row of stitching…going down the diagonal row.  Repeat this sequence up and down the area, always on the diagonal rows.   The first diagram illustrates the concept.  The second diagram illustrates each diagonal row by color to clearly separate the rows.

The Continental stitch covers each horizontal row in sequential order, both across and down, ending with a similar look as Basketweave.

 

Starting in the upper right corner, add the first stitch and move across the horizontal row to the left.  When you complete the first row, you (literally) turn your canvas upside down and repeat the same stitch going back across the second row.  You alternate the direction of the canvas for each row.  (In the diagram, the canvas is upright for gray stitches and upside down for turquoise stitches.)

If you do the aquamarine rows with the canvas upright, the typical mistake is to start from the lower left corner and end in the upper right corner.  This results in one tiny vertical stitch covering the row on the back of the canvas, leaving the area open to light and an uneven appearance on the front of the canvas.

My preferred combination is Continental stitch for any single row of needlepoint, such as an outline, window frame, or simple flower stem.  For any areas wider or longer than one row in either direction, I use the Basketweave stitch. 

Plain Needlepoint is a classic and good looking stitch.  It is a nod to tradition and is quite elegant on its own, especially when used to add shading to an area.  I don't have that many rules about needlepoint.  However, I feel very strongly that all needlepoint projects should have spaces dedicated to Plain Needlepoint.  I love decorative stitches and Plain Needlepoint helps set them apart and gives the eye someplace to rest.  It's a matter of balance. 

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

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 seasonal Melissa Shirley designs.  22 guides are currently available and more are in the pipeline.

Enjoy!