For those of you that are new to hand embroidery, I want to offer a few tips. This is the first clue in my mystery followers, so I hope this little lesson will make the embroidery step clear.
Gather your supplies…
My favorite supplies.
I like to use Valdani Perle Cotton size 12 for my all my embroidered quilts. My other supplies include a 5″ no slip hoop, Clover Chenille needles size 24, and Graphite Pencil for tracing my design. Optional is a thimble and Clover Embroidery Threader.
To embroider a CURVE…
Lefties stitch around the curve CLOCKWISE.
Righties embroider a curve COUNTER CLOCKWISE.
I was inspired years ago in adding embroidery to my quilts by looking at very early quilts. This particular quilt was amazing.
The embroidery in this quilt is amazing.
What I saw in this quilt and others changed my way of embroidering quilts forever. This needle woman not only stitched one line with one thread, but then HIGHLIGHTED her embroidery by doing a second. I know the picture doesn’t show it, but there was also a THIRD line of embroidery in this little thistle.
How do we accomplish the same thing? By using 3 different colors and going just to the NORTH of the previous stitching line.
Many of you asked what colors to use. I just chose colors that coordinated with my fabrics. They don’t have to match perfectly. Choose colors YOU love. The only concern you must have is that you will see your stitching on your background fabric. If you use pastel colored thread on a pastel background, all your lovely stitching will not show and there will be weeping, which we try hard to avoid when quilting!
In my sample, I chose cranberry to begin. I’m working on the stem stitch.
Your thread is held down by your left thumb if you are right handed. (Not doing too good a job in this photo.)
Because I’m right handed, the needle is always going from right to left.
After I have stitched my line, I’m going to thread up a second needle with a second color. This time I’m using gold.
Using the gold I’m stitching just ABOVE the previous line of cranberry.
I’m not stitching on TOP of the previous cranberry line, but to the NORTH of the line.
I could stop right there and have a beautiful line, but I am going to use a third color, green.
WOW! Look what happens to your embroidery.
Your stitching goes from ho hum to YUM! Here is a sample of a single line that I did in “Poke Berry Baskets”.
“Poke Berry Baskets” by Cindy Blackberg
close up shot
The stitching IS lovely, but look what I did in my new quilt, which some of you are working on…
Close up using 3 different colors of Valdani.
Of course, the question is going to come up, “Do I HAVE to use three different colors for my embroidery?” Of course, not! My sample of “Poke Berry Baskets” is fine. You can see the stitching line perfectly. This is YOUR quilt you are working on and you should do what YOU want. This is supposed to be FUN!