It's a new month and time to walk you through a new "Year of the Stitch at Elefantz" tutorial.
The stitch for February is 'fly stitch', and we're going to make some leaves...
I only really 'got' this stitch last year, and practiced by making a flurry of fly stitch leaves all across my "Partridge & Pear" Christmas wall hanging...
It's a beautiful stitch if you want to add some body to a simple leaf shape, and that's what we're doing today.
You can begin by downloading my free practice design HERE...
You'll need a small piece of fabric, two strands of green embroidery thread (DMC, Anchor, Cosmo etc - your choice), and a new embroidery needle because too often we forget to change our needles and wonder why hand stitching is becoming a bit tough on the fingers.
Trace the design and if you want to follow my usual stitchery preparations, fuse some fabric stabiliser behind it. I like to use Weaveline or Whisperweft, and I never use a hoop - but prepare your block in the manner that best suits you.
I start my leaf at the stem with a couple of small back stitches (my tutorial for back stitch is HERE)...
Your needle is now just ahead of your previous thread entry hole, so stitch back into that hole but instead of bringing the needle up ahead as with a back stitch, this time we'll bring the needle through at the left bottom edge of the leaf shape, and back over and through the right side of the leaf, and bring the needle up along the middle line again, behind the loop you've made...
Take your needle and thread over the loop and down through the middle line of the leaf to the back again. This will secure the vein of the leaf.
Bring the needle back out along the left edge of the leaf and repeat this process following the shape of the leaf...
Now, I'm really not the best at describing steps in tutorials with my words - which is why I use a lot of photos - but I hope that combined with the photos they are clear enough for you to understand the process of making a fly stitch leaf.
When I finished my little sample block I made a small pin-book featuring this design on the cover.
Pincushions are great for use at home, but what about when you are away from home and want to take a few pins with you?
This would be perfect.
If you decide you really enjoy making fly stitch leaves and want to make my Partridge & Pears wall hanging after you finish the 'pins' sample block, I've listed the complete step by step pattern HERE in my shop for the rest of February at just $3.95 for an instant pdf download.
I've also included a smaller framed redwork version of Partridge & Pears in the pdf pattern, complete with all stitchery instructions. It's mostly basic back stitch with a tiny bit of satin stitch (remember my back stitch tutorial HERE).
The Partridge & Pears double pattern will be available in the shop until February 28th only.
If you make the sample fly stitch block and use it in a project I'd love to see a photo. Just click on the 'contact me' button under my blog header to email your photo to me, and I can share it on my blog because you'll be an inspiration to others!
It's Friday! \o/
Just need to send off my free Friday Newsletter to all subscribers (details HERE), and then I get an early mark for the weekend.
It's raining so I guess I'll just have to stitch.
No complaints, eh?