Snowberries by Haandarbejdets Fremme
|This is an Assisi style design with the background stitched and the leaves and berries unstitched.
I hadn't used Danish Flower Thread and it seems very fine for cross stitch. However it covers the 32 count linen in the kit quite well.
The pattern is fairly simply but some of the backstitch is quite tricky. Some stitches are worked over two threads in one direction and only one in the other which of course gives smoother lines especially since the berries are round.
The finished design is quite striking and there was a whole skein unused. I'm going to mount it in a circular flexihoop and hang it at our conservatory window.
|by Anne Peden on Mon, 13 Nov 2017, 17:00|
Review of Koi Carp by Needleart World
|These kits are from the Grafitec company who produce traditional screen printed needlepoint canvases.
We visited their stand at a trade fair where they were introducing their new cross stitch kits which have the design printed directly onto the fabric. After stitching that is completely washed away.
I was intrigued and decided to try one out. I was perhaps a bit ambitious in my choice of Koi Carp which is stitched on 11 count canvas and has a finished size of 67 by 57 centimetres (26 by 22 inches). Aida isn't my preferred fabric and I would normally have gone for 14 count but I did like the design which also has a printed background.
The floss comes on numbered cards and needs to be halved in length and split into two lots of three strands to be used. The printing is exactly as the company claims, accurately printed on each block so unlike printed needlepoint canvas there are no decisions to be made and I cartainly preferred the precision. I find printed needlepoint pictures unsatisfactory.
This design has twenty-eight colours so the key doesn't just have only coloured squares, it has some with symbols on top. I found some of these a bit too similar to identify and did sometimes refer to the full colour chart which is more traditional with black symbols on the actual shade of the floss. In fact at one point I did stitch a bit in the wrong colour before referring to the picture and then the chart. This may not apply with smaller designs or those with fewer colours of floss.
I was aware throughout that I would be washing the finished embroidery so made the starting and finishing lengths of thread longer than normal but there was still ample floss left over.
Finally, I completed the stitching and reached the exciting bit where I washed out the stitching grid. As suggested I washed twice and rinsed thoroughly and yes, everything disappeared, except of course the background and faint remnants of the key.
The first Needleart World catalogue has 52 designs ranging in size from 12 centimetres square to 85 by 62 centimetres with some on 14 count Aida and some on 11 count Aida so there are a limited number of designs. But if you find a design you like and are happy to work on Aida, I could certainly recommend them.
|by Anne Peden on Tue, 07 Nov 2017, 19:44|
Review of Grafitec Needlepoint Canvas
|Grafitec canvases are screen printed in full colour. They give three options for floss DMC stranded cottons, DMC soft embroidery cottons and DMC tapestry wools.
I chose a small canvas 'Autumn' and DMC stranded cottons. The instructions do say that the floss recommendations are only a guide and as the colour given for the sky was more lilac than sky blue, I changed it for another shade but used their suggestions for all the other colours used.
The design is intended to be worked completely in half cross stitch but since there is a fence in the picture, I felt that it would be difficult to reproduce in half cross stitch. So I decided to add backstitch after the half cross stitch was completed using three strands of cotton. Of course once the half cross stitch is finished then the details are almost lost so I had to improvise and add some backstitch as I went. Luckily, I was adding straight lines.
It's possible that the problem I encountered only applied because it was a small canvas but I think even larger pictures would also have some small detail which could easily be lost.
I also found it difficult to decide which colours to use on the stitches on the boundary between but I'm sure practiced needlepoint stitchers don't find this a problem. Perhaps I'm looking at it as a cross stitcher.
The stranded cottons have a nice finish although light still shines through the canvas. Next I'm going to stitch another of the same canvas in wools to see what the differences are.
|by Anne Peden on Thu, 20 Jul 2017, 15:22|
|Swedish weaving is also known as huck embroidery or huck weaving and became popular in the US during the 1930s and 40s. It was first used to embellish plain household fabrics like towels, table runners and pillow cases and is now also used smaller projects like pot holders and larger projects such as afghans.
There are various fabric used for this technique Aida, huck toweling and huck fabric but any evenweave fabric may be used.
Huck toweling is 16 to 18 inches wide and is used for towels or runners. Huck fabric is 60 inches wide and suitable for larger projects. Both fabrics should be washed in hot water, dried thoroughly and ironed before use as they will shrink.
Threads used depend on the fabric and can be stranded cottons, pearl cottons or acrylic yarn but not 100% wools.
The stitches are simple and are done by picking up vertical threads called floats on the front of the fabric so that the stitching doesn't show through on the reverse. The stitching is typically worked in rows using lengths of threads two and a half times the width of the fabric to be stitched.
Many designs are worked in a single shade but brighter, more colourful patterns are also available and designs can even be personalised with woven words and letters.
See Swedish Weave Designs for patterns, fabric and kits.
|by Anne Peden on Fri, 28 Oct 2016, 18:19|
Outline stitches in Blackwork
|Until recently I used backstitch to outline areas in blackwork. Then I tried out one of Classic Embroidery's designs The Little Owl and to make it reversible I had to use double running stitch.
I think I won't go back to using backstitch as the finished result with double running stitch is finer. See my illustration with the double running stitch above the backstitch.
I work large areas and the first time round is a bit tricky to keep track but then it's much easier to complete with the intermediate running stitches so probably just as quick to stitch.
|by Anne Peden on Fri, 27 May 2016, 10:27|
Golden Crown Mark 2
|Having learned from my first attempt at making a dressing-up crown, I decided to make a smaller lighter version.
Still working on 10 count plastic canvas, I stitched the body completely in whole cross stitch using Anchor Metallic gold 300. The edge was finished as before with 1/8 ribbon by Kreinik in 002 gold.
The heart shaped bead came from a pack of three, but it's a bit heavy so instead of using them all I added some sequins in a similar colour.
I sewed turquoise felt on the reverse stitching through by hand with gold sewing machine thread. That made the crown look a bit dull as the gold thread doesn't completely fill the holes in the canvas so I changed it for yellow to make it much brighter.
The princess was finally satisfied (for the moment) although she spent a couple of days dressing as a witch instead.
|by Anne Peden on Tue, 17 May 2016, 19:59|
|We thought we'd try a design in the exciting new Coloris by DMC.
Since it has radical colour changes rather than subtle, it seemed like it might be suitable for Assisi work. I started with a simple shape of a ladybird with large areas to fill in cross stitch and of course completed both halves of each cross as I went. I decided on 4516 Black Forest and worked on antique white evenweave.
You can see from the right hand side of the finished embroidery that the outcome is rows of colour rather than blotches. It reminded me of knitting in random dyed wool.
I tried a different approach on the left hand side of the ladybird. Rather than starting at the centre which would mean referring to the chart constantly, I stitched the perimeter and then worked inwards following the shape. I think this gives more interesting blobs of colour.
Perhaps if you've tried out this floss you have other ideas? Please let us know.
|by Anne Peden on Tue, 17 May 2016, 19:54|
A Golden Crown
|Our three year old granddaughter said ' Gran, I need a crown' . I could have made one out of paper but after a bit of thought I decided on plastic canvas.
It's more of a tiara really with elastic to hold it on. I wanted to use gold metallic threads so I picked 10 mesh and used a mixture of Kreinik flosses. No. 32 covers well in tent stitch but to add interest and texture I also used no. 8 and no. 16.
I wasn't sure whether it would be better to cut the shape first and then embroider or embroider first and cut afterwards. Cutting complicated shapes with a craft knife is a bit tricky as you find you sometimes go too far. In the end I cut one half of the shape and followed the line as I stitched on the other half.
The lower border is stitched in cushion stitch using no.8 in 002 gold. I followed with a row of tent stitch in no.32 002. Then a diagonal stitch over two and satin stitch squares in no. 32 High Lustre 002HL alternating direction to save carrying the floss across the reverse.
I worked two fir stitches also in no. 32 High Lustre 002HL, one each side of the centre. The raw edges were quite sharp and would have caught in the princess's hair. I tried going over them with no. 32 braid but it didn't cover well and then I tried 1/8th ribbon which did work well. I only happened to have that in Aztec gold so felt it should appear on places other than the edge hence the sweeping pattern. I filled in with no.32 002 braid in tent stitch above and no. 16 braid 002 in tent stitch below. Then finished around the edges with the 1/8th ribbon.
The large bead came from an old necklace and I lined the reverse with a similar colour of fabric stitching with gold sewing thread which didn't show on the front.
Having learned from my first attempt, there will possibly be a second smaller version when time permits.
|by Anne Peden on Sat, 02 Apr 2016, 17:39|
Uses & Care for Kreinik Metallic Ribbons
| Applications: crazy quilting (hand and machine), crewel, cross stitch/counted thread, doll making (hand and machine), fly fishing, kids' crafts, machine embroidery/bobbin work, machine embroidery/couching, needlepoint/canvas work, plastic canvas, ribbon embroidery, stumpwork, weaving.
Kreinik 1/16" and 1/8" Ribbon create a beautiful frosted look in ribbon embroidery. They also create a flat texture and delicate shimmery effect in samplers. This texture makes them ideal for needlepoint, canvas work, and plastic canvas as well. In addition, you can couch 1/16" and 1/8" Ribbons on any fabric for surface embellishment with a corresponding color of Kreinik Cord or Blending Filament. Use the corded ribbons couched with a corresponding color of Kreinik Cord to create the appearance of elegant gold work.
Whether you are creating an art quilt, wearable art, bridal items, home decor, embroidered accessories, or other creations on a sewing machine, Kreinik Ribbons offer colorful, textured embellishment options. The ribbons can easily be couched with a corresponding color of Kreinik Cord or a clear thread in the needle. (Or use a contrasting color in the needle for interesting effects.) This is an easy embellishment technique that lends refined elegance to traditional designs (choose the muted and corded colors) and sensory excitement to artistic extravagances (let color be your guide). To keep the threads in position, use a braiding foot, multi-cord foot, or similar foot available for your machine. Stitch slowly to keep the ribbons flat as you couch. Experiment with zig-zag or other decorative stitches to create interesting effects.
With a few adjustments to tension and thread set-ups, you can also use 1/16" Ribbon in the bobbin of a machine. Try straight stitch designs on a scrap of fabric to experiment with the technique.
For the ultimate in beauty and texture, use the Kreinik Ribbons to create ribbon embroidery by machine. The soft pearl and pale pastel colors are ideal for bridal accessories. Use an embroidery hoop and remove the foot; refer to the many books on the market that talk about ribbon embroidery by machine, and substitute Kreinik Ribbons for silk ribbons.
Kreinik Ribbons are hand or machine washable and dry cleanable. Cool water is recommended. Do not use bleach. They can also be tumble-dried on low setting. When ironing a finished piece containing Kreinik metallic ribbons, do not iron directly on the thread; use a cloth, and do not use steam.
Tips on using Kreinik Ribbon in hand work:
The 1/16" Ribbon comes on a snap-spool mechanism. Both sides of the spool open; look for the side where the thread end is located. Insert your thumbnail under the cap, and rotate the spool while gently lifting the cap to release the thread (the cap should not pop off). Snap the lid shut to secure the unused portion.
The 1/8" Ribbon has a lock-flange mechanism: the thread 'locks' in the groove around the top of the spool. Simply pull the thread to release. Wrap the thread in the groove to secure the unused portion.
Use short lengths of ribbon-about 45cm (18 inches) or less-for greater control (less knotting!) and to avoid excessive abrasion on the thread from repeated passes through the ground fabric or canvas.
Use a needle large enough to 'open' the hole in the fabric sufficiently and allow the ribbon to go through more easily.
Threading Technique for Ribbon
For a quick-and-easy, take-anywhere threading technique, cut a small strip of paper and fold in half. Place the fold through the eye of the needle and open the two ends to insert the thread in between. Gently pull the paper through so the thread is brought with it.
The way a needle is twisted during stitching, combined with the twist of the thread, can cause any thread to twist on itself. Stitch slowly for greater control, and let your needle hang frequently to let the thread untwist. You may also wish to moisten the ribbon with a slightly damp sponge to relax the thread.
The ribbons are easy to lay flat, but use a laying tool, your needle, or your finger for extra control.
|by Kreinik on Thu, 25 Feb 2016, 10:56|
Uses & Care for Kreinik Braids
| Applications depend on the thickness of the braid but include: appliqué (hand and machine), blackwork, costumes, crazy quilting (hand and machine), crewel, crochet, cross stitch/counted thread, doll making (hand and machine), fly fishing, hardanger, kids crafts, knitting (by hand), lace making, machine embroidery/bobbin work, machine embroidery/couching, machine embroidery/in the needle, miniatures, needlepoint/canvas work, plastic canvas, punch embroidery, quilting (hand and machine), ribbon embroidery, serging, silk gauze/Polysil embroidery, smocking, stumpwork, tatting, weaving.
The Very Fine (#4) , Fine (#8), Tapestry (#12), and Medium (#16) Braids are available in these types: Basic, Hi lustre, Glow-in-the-dark, Vintage, and Corded braids. The Heavy (#32) Braid is available in Basic, Hi lustre, and Glow-in-the-dark.
Kreinik Braids are used alone rather than combined with another thread type in the needle. Use the metallic braids to recreate the color and texture of nature and life, such as glistening snow, luminescent butterflies, glowing moons and stars, polished black leather shoes, shimmering fish or sea life, and more. You can also use their light-reflecting properties to create mood in a design; imagine the radiant stardust of an angel, the magical shimmer of a mermaid, or the crystalline coating of a winter's snowfall. Of course, you can also use the metallic braids just to bring sparkle, depth, texture and visual interest to any project, whether it is worked in crochet, cross stitch, canvas work, crewel, or ribbon embroidery. Don't be afraid of adding a light source in a design and replacing a cotton or wool thread for a metallic thread; the effect of combining different thread textures can be more visually exciting than a design worked in a single thread type. With these braids, your creative possibilities are endless.
Whether you are creating an art quilt, wearable art, bridal items, home decor, embroidered accessories, or other creations on a sewing machine, Kreinik Braids offer colorful, textured embellishment options. Depending on their size, they can be used in the bobbin, in the needle, or couched. Experiment with tension settings, needles, machine feet and thread set-ups until you get a combination that works for your machine and fabric. Using decorative threads with a sewing machine may take a little extra time, but the colors and textures won't disappoint you in the finished project. They can create award-winning, memory-making, dynamic visual effects.
Kreinik Braids are hand or machine washable and dry cleanable. Cool water is recommended. Do not use bleach. They can also be tumble-dried on low setting. When ironing a finished piece containing Kreinik Braids, do not iron directly on the thread; use a cloth, and do not use steam.
Tips on using Kreinik Braids in hand work:
The Very Fine (#4), Fine (#8) and Tapestry (#12) come on a snap-spool mechanism. Both sides of the spool open; look for the side where the thread end is located. Insert your thumbnail under the cap, and rotate the spool while gently lifting the cap to release the thread (the cap should not pop off). Snap the lid shut to secure the unused portion.
The Medium (#16) and Heavy (#32) Braids have a lock-flange mechanism: the thread 'locks' in the groove around the top of the spool. Simply pull the thread to release. Wrap the thread in the groove to secure the unused portion.
Use short lengths of thread-about 45cm (18 inches) or less-to avoid excessive abrasion when pulling the thread through the ground fabric or canvas. The more we pull a strand through fabric or canvas, the more 'wear' it causes on the thread. Using shorter lengths will maintain the quality of the thread, plus reduce tangling as shorter lengths are easier to control (less knotting!).
If you are stitching on fabric, use a needle large enough to 'open' the hole in the fabric sufficiently and allow the thread to go through more easily.
Threading Technique for Kreinik Braids
For a quick-and-easy, take-anywhere threading technique, cut a small strip of paper and fold in half. Place the fold through the eye of the needle and open the two ends to insert the thread in between. Gently pull the paper through so the thread is brought with it
You may wish to moisten the braid with a slightly damp sponge, or moisture from your own hands after rubbing them together, to help relax the thread and thus reduce twisting and knotting.
The way a needle is twisted during stitching, combined with the twist of the thread, can cause any thread to twist on itself. Stitch slowly for greater control, and let your needle hang frequently to let the thread untwist.
Stitch using the 'stab' method rather than the 'hand sewing' method to reduce tangling, working your stitches in two movements: up vertically then down vertically through the fabric.
|by Kreinik on Thu, 25 Feb 2016, 10:47|
Earlier Stitchcraft Articles ...
|Kreinik Cable ... Applications: |
|Blending Filament ... Applications :
|Transferring designs to fabric for surface embroidery ... We were recently asked how to transfer your own design onto fabric to embroider.
|Seasonal Blooms by Brittercup Designs ... I've liked these designs ever since I first saw them so took this opportunity to try Winter.
|Witching Hour Ornament by the Prairie Schooler ... This cute design took only a couple of evening to stitch. |
|Milkweed Butterfly and Flower ... I have stitched some Thea Gouverneur designs before from her two lovely books |
|Embroidered Table Covers ... Hand stitched printed table covers always look lovely on your dining table.
|Rico Design Hooded Baby Towels ... These baby towels make lovely gifts and can be used from birth and for many years. |
|Easter Rabbit by Eva Rosenstand ... Eva Rosenstand kits are now produced by Permin of Copenhagen and the key and instructions are in the same format as their designs. |
|Iphone 5 Phone Covers by Anchor. ... This is a quick and easy project worked completely in whole cross stitch on silicone covers. |
|Flexihoops ... I decided to use one of these frames to mount the reversible Little Owl from the Classic Embroidery pattern.
|Review of Little Owl, blackwork kit by Classic Embroidery ... This pretty little design is sold as a 'weekender' and certainly can be completed in a weekend or a few evenings.
|Review of Believe by Designs Works ... A pretty little design of the word with fairies and beads.
|Review of Woodland Winter by Rose Swalwell ... A pretty little design from a seasonal set. |
|Review of Gardener Chick by Heritage Crafts ... Heritage Crafts have lots of birds and flower kits converted from the artwork of Valerie Pfeiffer which are very pretty and timeless.
|Review of Cow - Sheep- Pig - Bull ... We decided that it would be a good idea to stitch a few different suppliers' kits to review them for our customers.
|Quaker Style ... Crewel work was very popular in Europe during the sixteenth and seventeenth century. |
|An Introduction to Bargello ... There are lots of names for this style of canvas work including |
|Half Cross Stitch ... Some cross stitch designs have areas of |
|Band Samplers ... Band Samplers are a very old form of embroidery dating back to the Late Middle Ages. |
|Swedish Weaving ... This traditional craft had a revival in the 1930s and 40s and is becoming increasingly popular today.
|Something a little bit different ...
|Ribbon Embroidery ...
|Counted Beadwork ... Beadwork was very popular in Victorian times when it was used to decorate evening dresses and bags and in furnishings such as cushions and footstools.
|Assisi Embroidery ... Assisi embroidery comes from the Italian town of that name and was once used to decorate ecclesiastical linens. |
|Blackwork Easter Egg - a simple example. ... There's nothing very complicated about blackwork. |
|Would you like to try hardanger ? ... Some of you have recently expressed interest in hardanger, so we decided to research the subject a little and look for a few products.
|New Baby? ... News of an expected new baby is always very exciting, and not just to the parents-to-be!|
|Miss Potter - Renaissance Woman ... Hollywood has seen a ready market for adaptations of British childrens' classics - Alice in Wonderland, Winnie the Pooh, Peter Pan, and so on, but now director Chris Noonan has made a new movie based on the life of the storyteller rather than the stories. |
|Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat ... ... Or perhaps, «gravitationally challenged», but it just doesn't scan.
|Searching for Golden Threads ... I had a long search to find the |
|Mounting Your Embroidery On Card ... This is a short piece with advice on mounting your embroidery on card for framing - what type of thread to use and how to do it.
|What Colour Is Blackwork? ... Blackwork is over four hundred years old |
|Not Another Embroidery! ... There are many, many cross stitch and embroidery designs and kits out there. |
|Goldwork ... Goldwork embroidery |
|Stitching Techniques And Tips ... An introduction to working cross stitch, blackwork and needlepoint designs with some useful tips and advice for beginners.