Could this be a misnomer? Herringbone Squares!

I’ve never understood how something named a “square” is actually a diamond shape. But there it is – a herringbone square makes a diamond shape rather than a square.

For the herringbone squares I used 1 strand of Caron Collection Watercolours 007 Pistachio Nut. The original color way was stitched with Rainbow Gallery Splendor S865 Dark Aqua, 2 strands.

I actually prefer this stitch with an overdyed thread, because most of the color changes are on top of the canvas, rather than underneath. A herringbone square can be somewhat confusing because it is stitched from the inside out – the first stitch, a cross stitch, is right in the center of the finished square/diamond.

To make it less difficult, I like to show the starting cross stitch in the diagrams:

I anchored with an away knot, placed where I would be stitching toward it. When I got to the knot I clipped it off.

In this diagram, the first cross stitch is shown in red. The next stitches are made around this first stitch. All of the end points of the second round are lined with with the end points of the cross stitch; you could draw parallel lines out from the first end points, and all of the next stitches should be on those parallel lines.

You’ll notice that the last stitch of the second round, stitch 11-12, slides under the first stitch of the second round, stitch 5-6 before ending. This puts a thread on top of every stitch all the way around, and gives the herringbone square a more balanced look.

Continue stitching around. In this diagram each round is shown in a different color. The numbers are pretty much useless because they are covered by the stitches, but each round is just like the one before.

The end points of all the rounds are in line with the end points of the first beginning cross stitch. Don’t forget to slide the last stitch of every round under the first stitch of the round before ending.

End off by weaving into the back of the stitches; you should have some neat parallel lines on the back for this!

In the diagram you can see the first cross stitch in a black, to help you keep track of where to begin the herringbone squares.

I love the color changes with the overdyed thread. You can try to manipulate the overdyed (if you’re using an overdyed) to have all four corners match, but I usually don’t take this step. I hope you like this stitch!

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