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TAPESTRY – CROSS STITCH

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TAPESTRY – CROSS STITCH – NEEDLEPOINT
Another wonderful relaxing and rewarding pastime, giving long lasting results for the home or maybe a gift or items for sale.

If you are a ‘newby’ this I my guidelines that I have used, being a newby myself when I started, if a more advanced sewing person you probably know all of this, sorry!

I have used the excellent well established companies that specialize in ‘kits’ large and small with everything needed to enjoy this art craft.

Kits usually include the best Yarns to work with in 100’s of different colours, also included you will find the canvas with your design of choice, full instructions, stitches to use, needle, a colour chart for the yarn which is usually printed on the side of the canvas to follow, the yarn in exact amounts to do the work….

So your first job is to match the yarn with the chart, separate them and number each colour ready. (I make small card ‘wrap-arounds’ printed with number and colour and staple one side to hold each colour yarn tidily).

EMBROIDERY HOOPSNext – set the canvas to make it fit tight to the frame.
If you are starting with a small item then an embroidery frame will be ideal to stretch the canvas onto keep it firm and flat, to work with, small items like this can easily be taken with you anywhere, the garden, park etc.

But larger ones will need a special frame to work with, either a table top size or floor standing, these can be purchased from the sewing kit companies or craft shops.
FRAME SZ6My ‘old faithful’ is getting a little bit battered now with much use but should last as long as I shall need it!
You also need a place to sew where you have plenty of good light for the fine stitching, luckily I have space in a spare room that has plenty of light, some relaxing music is nice and I keep an odd note pad and pen nearby to jot down things I think of and things I plan to do while I am sewing.

 

Having your canvas stretched onto your frame its ready to start stitching the design, although I have made designs in cross stitch, long stitch etc, I prefer to work in half cross stitch but that’s my choice.

Use no more than 18inches (34cm) of yarn at a time, as the friction of being pulled back and forth through th mesh of the canvas can cause the yarn to fray.

DELPHINIUMS BELL PULL XXDelphiniums Bell pull – Inever did get round to finishing this with the special ‘ends’ tassels and cord …. but one day !!

I prefer to start at the bottom and work my way up, but if instructions state otherwise follow that. .. see the charts for method here for half cross stitch.

box 4 stitch no 1box 4 stitch no 2
working from the left to right, and one hand underneath the canvas to push the needle and yarn UP through the hole in the mesh and the other hand on top to push the needle and yarn back DOWN – start by coming up from behind leaving approx 1 inch of yarn below which should be laid flat
facing the way you will be stitching so it will be covered with the first 4/5 stitches made to bind it.

 SEE CHART 1 for the first row, starting at an empty hole and coming UP from behind at square 1 – go DOWN  at square 2 in the hole on the row above and to the right , then come UP at the bottom row in the hole square 2 – next to the first one, continue to the end of the row to work.

SEE CHART 2 – the next row, at the last stitch take your thread up at the back of canvas to the row above and come UP through the hole and DOWN into a hole that has been worked – you wil note you are now working this row from right-to-left. Continue the rows till the area of design is complete, then finish by slipping the needle and yarn through a few stitches at the back. NO knots in tapestry!!

ALL STITCHES MUST BE IN THE SAME DIRECTION THROUGHOUT THE WORK  – and if done corretly you will notice that at the back of the canvas all the stitches are small neat verticly stitches.

When you have finished your design you will need to remove it from the frame and make it ready for your desired finish i.e. a picture a cushion, a footstool for instance and it will have be ‘blocked or straightened’. To do this you need a piece of board that has a surface that can take small (rust proof) pins/drawing pins inserted. A cork board can be used. The canvas will be made slightly damp so make sure the board will not stain your work, a thin cloth or blotting paper can be placed down before the canvas. Lay your work face down onto the board and pin it in shape by the edges, making sure it is a perfectly square. Dampen the work lightly with a sponge and leave to dry at room temperature. … when satisfied that all is in shape, it can be ironed if necessary on the wrong side when dry and ready to mount.
HAPPY STITCHING.

CATS N DALMATION

 

GIFAFFES SQUARE

SQ FLAMINGO N LONG STITCH

 

SHANGRILA

These are just a few that I have to hand, hope you get started and enjoy this therapeutic craft.

With the Summer months slowly coming to an end – Oh no, Christmas is just around the corner, so some small kits would be an unusual gift to give.

Barbara

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