A Gentle Fabric for Stitching

stitchingonwool1For those of you who love to hand stitch, I highly recommend hand embroidery on wool. Thread glides smoothly through the cloth, no hoop is needed, your hands are caressed by the fabric, and knots (if you use them) hide in the bulky fabric. It’s a rich, gentle fabric ideal for hand embroidery.

Cut out wool shapes with sharp scissors and attach them to the background fabric with a pin or tacking stitches.Usually I stitch a Blanket Stitch around the edges to hold the shape in place.

stitchingonwool3Here you see that the Blanket Stitch in red has a second thread (green) whipped through the top edge of the stitch to give more definition to the outline of the shape. I’m also experimenting with stacking Fly Stitches to make leaf shapes using a variegated size 8 thread called Lettuce. Although the Fly Stitches are stitched closely together, it is easy to stitch through the wool.

tracytrevethanwoolMy favorite source for colorful wool is hand dyed by Tracy Trevethan. The Wooly Ladies also carry wool suitable for hand work as do many of your local quilt shops. In the Rare Songbird project from my book, Joyful Stitching, I use a hand-dyed wool for the background. And many of these free tutorials on my Rare Songbird project from my book, Tutorial Page use their hand dyed wools as well. Give it a try. Your hands will thank you!

Flower Vase Stitch Along #7

vaseonwool17This is our last day for the Flower Vase Stitch Along. Thank you for joining me and I hope you’ve enjoyed the embroidery and fun stitch combinations. Please send me photos of your stitchery. I’d love to see what you’ve made! Email is laura@artfabrik.com

  • Stitch 8 arcs of Cable Stitches between the other flower stems using a light/medium green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch a Sheaf Stitch on the tip of each Cable Stitch flower stem using yellow thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch a French Knot in the center of each Sheaf Stitch using a blue thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.

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  • Stitch rows of Chain Stitches across the fabric to within 1/4″ of the side edges and down to the bottom of the fabric to make the table.
  • Begin the top row of Chain Stitches where the top of the Blanket Stitch and French Knot rows appear on the vase. Use a red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch 2 rows of Chain Stitches around the fabric to within 1/4″ of the side and top edges to make the borders. Use a red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Trim the outside edges of the fabric close to the Chain Stitched borders.

Thank you for visiting with me while we made this colorful vase of flowers. You can find directions for the entire Flower Vase Stitch Along here. Check out more Tutorials here.

Flower Vase Stitch Along #6

vaseonwool16These flowers are only indigenous to the Chicagoland area so you may not recognize them. And it takes several stitches to bring them to life. (Note that directions will be added to the Flower Vase Stitch Along page as we go.)

  • Stitch a Lazy Daisy Stitch about 3″ up from the center of the rim of the vase using a light/medium green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Using that same thread, stitch a line of Fern Stitches down into the previous stitches to make a center flower stem.

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  • Stitch Fly Stitches on either side of the Fern Stitch line to make flowers.
  • Use a red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch a Straight Stitch inside the loop of the top Lazy Daisy Stitch using a yellow thread and size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Using that same thread, stitch French Knots  inside of each flower.
  • Repeat the above steps to make 2 more flower stems on either side of the first stem.

Flower Vase Stitch Along #5

vaseonwool13Time to fill up that colorful vase with lots of stitch combo plants. (Note that directions will be added to the Flower Vase Stitch Along page as we go.)

  • Stitch 4 lines of Stem Stitches arcing out of the vase to make stems.
  • Use a medium/dark green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch Lazy Daisy Stitches on either side of each stem to make leaves.
  • Use a medium/dark green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.

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  • Stitch Ermine Stitches on the ends of stem to make a flower.
  • Use a blue thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch French Knots in the center of each Ermine Stitch.
  • Use a yellow thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch Bullion Knots between each spike of the Ermine Stitch.
  • Use a red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.

Flower Vase Stitch Along #4

vaseonwool11To complete the vase shape, we’ll add another fun stitch combination and some free form embroidery. (Note that directions will be added to the Flower Vase Stitch Along page as we go.)

  • Stitch 3 rows of Back Stitches across the vase to make a band of stitches above the previously stitched rows.
  • Space the rows about 1/8″ apart.
  • Use a yellow thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Fill the rows made by the Back Stitches with Bullion Knots.
  • Use blue thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.

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  • Stitch rows of Running Stitches curving up from the last band of stitches to the top of the vase shape.
  • Space the rows about 1/8″ apart.
  • Use  light/medium green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Fill the previous rows of Running Stitches with more Running Stitches.
  • Use red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Stitch 2 rows of Stem Stitches across the top of the vase to make the rim.
  • Use red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Remove the Running Stitches used to outline the vase shape on the wool.

Flower Vase Stitch Along #3

vaseonwool8Tell me if you see this too. This embroidery stitch combination above resembles an avocado sliced in half.  The Lazy Daisy Stitch forms the avocado slice and the French Knot makes the pit. See it? Or am I just hungry. (Note that directions will be added to the Flower Vase Stitch Along page as we go.)

  • Stitch a row of the Lazy Daisy Stitches across the vase to make a band of stitches above the previously stitched rows.
  • Alternate the stitch so the loop or rounded end is facing up then facing down.
  • Use light/medium green thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Fill in each loop made by the Lazy Daisy Stitches with French Knots.
  • Use red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.

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  • Stitch a second row of the Lazy Daisy Stitches across the vase to make a band of stitches above the previously stitched rows.
  • Alternate the stitch so the loop or rounded end is facing up then facing down.
  • Use red thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.
  • Fill in each loop made by the Lazy Daisy Stitches with French Knots.
  • Use yellow thread and a size 3 or 4 embroidery needle.