Stitch along – first steps

OK, now that you’ve had a chance to think about joining me in my design/stitching/writing/diagramming process, here’s what you’ll need to assemble.

The design is small, 6″ x 6″ on 18 ct. canvas, so you’ll need a piece of 18 ct. mono canvas, 12″ x 12″, and 2 pairs of 12″ stretcher bars with tacks. Don’t have a piece that big? No worries, I cut my canvas so I’ll have 3″ on each side of the design, but if you’re comfortable working with less margin it will work. Try to give yourself at least 1 1/2″ minimum on each side of the design.

I’m using white 18 ct. mono. You may decide to use a different color, based on your color choices. There will be a little exposed canvas, not much, so don’t count on the canvas color being integral to the design.

The design is based on a quilt block pattern. I’ve been drawing a lot of inspiration lately from quilt blocks. It’s easy to break down into shapes (usually square and triangles), not too complex, perfect for the small size I’m designing. And, usually it’s easy to get the concept with just a couple of colors. I decided to work in two shades of pink, a dark fuchsia pink and a light pink.

Any two colors will work, so don’t feel you have to stitch in pink. If you have the textures of threads in a different color scheme that will be fine. I think a light shade and dark shade of the same color will be easier, but you can certainly use contrasting colors if you like – red/green, yellow/green, blue/green, yellow/purple, blue/orange – use what makes you happy.

These are the threads I’ve pulled to stitch with, mostly Rainbow Gallery threads with a couple of Kreinik #8 braids thrown in. The Kreiniks are 024HL and 192. The Rainbow Gallery threads are Neon Rays N14 and N15, Neon Rays + NP14 and NP15, Mandarin Floss M910 and M911, and Silk Lame’ Braid SL24 and SL80.

Here’s the thing about my stitching process: I pull threads that I THINK I might want to use. I may use all of them or not, and I may find I need to add other threads. This is the starting point.

I’d encourage you to work from stash if you can, but if you can’t you may want to wait until I know for sure if more or fewer threads will be needed. But this is what I have in my bag.

If you don’t have access to Rainbow Gallery, or don’t have a good stash of them to draw from, pick at least a couple of cotton flosses, and a couple of #8 pearl cottons, maybe a silk ribbon or two if you have them. If you want to work with a minimum of threads as a challenge, great! It’s certainly easier to stitch with more options, but not impossible to achieve texture even with a limited number of threads.

OK, now get your canvas mounted, assemble your threads, and we’ll get started in a day or two. This will be fun!

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