Sunday, May 24, 2020

that stitch

Beyond the cross-stitch that my grandmother tasked me with when I was five (with these same, maple hoops) I'm self-taught. Pretty sure I never invented anything that didn't already have a proper name.

I call this stitch the wrapped rope, which is likely something I lifted from a sailing tutorial.

It's a simple way to make a stitched line show up better, cast its own shadow.

Here I'm using three strands of DMC cotton and a single strand of metallic machine thread for a little sparkle, all four threads doubled and knotted. The main stitch is the simplest split stitch.

Go slow if you fool with that metallic stuff. It heats up with too much friction and tends to snarl.

When I'm taking a curve, I've learned to make the stitches a little bit smaller to preserve the line. Sometimes I draw the letters on the cloth with a pencil. Sometimes I wing it. Making the decision to STOP and back out a stitch that didn't sit right is a moment to moment thing. You'll be glad you did it.

Once you have your line, wrap it by sliding the need under each stitch at a 45-degree angle in the direction of the curve. Try to not catch the cloth underneath. There's little resistance, so this part tends to go quickly but snarls always lurk, so take each one slowly. Admire how cool it looks.

Sometimes I cut the thread down to just three strands of DMC if the letters are small or space is tight and I want to reduce bulk.

Play with it, see what you like, what you don't.

If you have questions, I'll watch the comments and get back to you.

It's pretty much finished except for a little punctuation and getting turned into a little pillow. I'd love to find a feather pillow to fit it.  And some herbs to stuff inside. A dream pillow.

I've been floundering lately, so I've cast this circle for myself.

Asked and answered.


Liz A said...

oh my goodness ... these pictures are amazing ... and now I totally get it ... dare I be so bold???

and wondering, do you repeat the words, over and over, as you stitch? it is a form of meditation for me ... the why of how I love stitching them

Deb Lacativa said...

I already know this one by heart, but I have learned to read whatever it is out loud as I go because I HAVE made word/spelling errors in the past AND stitched them into place. See: and

CatherinE said...

I your lettering! I'm on a quest for a good way to letter in thread. I'm definitely going to try this method.

Liz A said...

I did it! Only four strands, but still ... so much larger than I usually stitch. And it feels amazing!