I was going to share this blog post a few days ago, but decided to wait until today, as it's World Embroidery Day! As a member of the Poppy Patch Posse (organised by Poppy Patch here in the UK) I'm currently working on this project - Forget Me Not Sewing Pocket by Gail Pan Designs. Once the background fabric has been prepped and the stitchery design traced, it's time to start the hand embroidery. I prefer to use a wooden embroidery hoop, to keep the fabric taut and help to maintain an even tension with my stitches. The project that I'm stitching at the moment uses Cottage Garden Threads. The packaging system unique to Cottage Garden Threads is designed to retain the information of the thread colour, number and weight as well as eliminating tangles. By just pulling on the left hand side of the skein, the thread will untwist and be ready to use length by length, or strand by strand.
...I've removed one pre-cut length of thread, which you can see is made up of 6 individial strands. My top tip is to gently pull out one length of thead, then pull the strands out one at a time, as this prevents the threads from tangling and knotting. I've used a Hiroshima Tulip embroidery needle - these are available in a variety of sizes. Simple is often the most effective, and this project uses very simple embroidery stitches - back stitch, satin stitch, running stitch and French knots, although I've used Colonial knots as I fnd them easier. As the stitching progresses, the hoop is removed and repositioned until all the embroidery stitches are completed. (If your fabric is too small for the hoop you've got, you can stitch some strips of calico/muslin to the sides of the background fabric, using a longer stitchlength and an eighth of an inch seam, to allow the strips to be removed once the embroidery is completed)...
...Cottage Garden Threads are designed with the same colour at either end of the pre-cut lengths for continuity of the subtle colour blend only achievable with hand dying. The short colour lengths within each skein of thread ensure a lovely effect when stitching even small details. Once all the embroidery stitches are completed, the hoop is removed and the finished piece is pressed. I use a wool pressing mat for this - the embroidered fabric is placed face down, covered with a pressing cloth ( I use a piece of calico for this, as I don't want to get a hot sticky mess on the soleplate of my iron) and pressed with a warm iron. Now I've finished the hand embroidery, I can finish constructing this project.
Hi - welcome to my quilting blog! My passions are my family, my dog, my friends and sewing, not necessarily in that order!
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These are the UK shops that I use to purchase my quilting supplies - fabrics and threads etc.