Tiny flowers and shine

April 20, 2007

I worked on some tiny shapes the other day. Two of them seemed rather unlikable to me.


Rather than abandon them, I decided to stitch some more just like them and decorate them with beads. I think they shine now.


And I thought the tiny diamond would make a flower or two. The leaves and grass are made using Palestrina stitches, too.


More shine added by gold and silver tone beads.



Ribbon can be shiny, too. I’d always wondered how I would use this ribbon with the little loops on each edge.


With the Palestrina stitch a thought came to mind. So I tested it with one, two and three plies of Watercolors.




Oops some of my stitching is not shining. I see I need to go back and fix up a few mistakes.

Have you noticed this stitch is rough on threads? Whenever I’ve had to fix my samples this week. I’ve had to just pull out the old and put in new threads. Of course, I should always do that but I often don’t for my own samples.

Tiny shapes

April 19, 2007

My morning had some unexpected glitches. Do computers wake up on the wrong side of the bed? I turned mine on this morning and neither Photoshop Elements nor emails would comply with my wishes. I finally had to disappear for work and came back to find everything pretty much back to normal. A sigh of relief! I don’t have to reinstall Photoshop Elements.


Tiny squares, triangles and diamonds–comparing the knots worked to the outside with those knots worked to the inside. My favorites are the first three and the last one. They make a nice spot of textured color or could fill a small space with a highly textured repeating grid. I’m thinking about adding a bead to the center of the two I don’t like. I’ll post the experiment before the week is out.

My tests on various threads


I loved the Perle 8 and the three strands of Watercolors. I also love the Silk & Ivory, but the photos don’t do it justice. Speaking of which see the next photo where I was again dutifully practicing curves

tstc16ccurvesongrid.png on grid and off grid

tstc16ccurvesoffgrid.png This as you may guess has much more to go. I’m not sure I’m going to keep it all in Palestrina. I could since there are certainly enough variations to keep me going.

Palestrina Angles

April 18, 2007

My thoughts ran to angles in stitching and here are a few samples.

tstc16bgreenthickthin.png thick and thin

tstc16bgreensmoothknotty.png smooth and knotty
tstc16bgreenslants.png dressing it up

tstc16bknotsstraight.png knots on the straight edge

and knots on the angles tstc16bknotsangles.png

tstc16bstraightinternaltria.png Oops, there are a few mistakes in this. I like the impression not the details. With better spacing and stitching I think this would work nicely.

Now for a more delicate look

tstc16balternatingfanstrip.png that still has lots of angles using Perle 8.

TSTC Week 16: The Palestrina Stitch

April 17, 2007

This week our TSTC is the Palestrina stitch. Sharon b has done an excellent job of introducing this stitch to us. Her stitch dictionary adds even more information and examples. While there, I took time to click on the variations that she lists for this stitch, too. For me it’s always great fun to explore her dictionary; I learn so much.

I’m starting out very slowly on this stitch tstc16asingle.png

The simple stuff first tstc16agroup.png

Then venturing out a little


I found a helpful link while going through my bloglines account last night. Mary Corbet at Needle’N Thread has posted some very interesting information, links and a video on this stitch. Thank you Mary!

That helped and influenced me as I tried these two lines.

tstc16areddiagonal.png tstc16avertical.png

I sure need more work on perfecting these stitches. Right now I have no intuitive feel for a good spacing of the knots. For me that hopefully comes with practice.

I tried a another idea here.

All by itself


Beside another strip

tstc16areversearrow1.png tstc16apositivearrow1.png

As a fill


Winding up when half explored

April 16, 2007

That’s what I keep doing with all these weekly stitches–wind up what I can with lots of things to explore in spare time and head on to the next stitch. The last couple weeks I’ve started making sketches of things I wanted to do but don’t have time to stitch. I’m tempted to call a halt and explore more exhaustively. But the desire to go on and learn more stitches wins.

I look forward to what Sharon b comes up with for TSTC each week. When I see a stitch I don’t know or dread, I think well I could do at least this much. And before I know it, just like this week, I’m finding how useful a stitch it is.

tstc15fweaving.png weaving a thread around a string of oyster stitches.

tstc15fvine.png a vine like thread between the off set oyster stitch string

tstc15fcouchingthickthin.png Three interlocking oyster strings couching some thin threads–I could just visualize this repeating to fill up a shape. Or with a few little adjustments, I could see fence posts strung with barbed wire.

A couple more ideas to in order to keep working on curves and circles.


I bought a pen with ink that disappears over time when exposed to the air. It did indeed! Less than one hour and I couldn’t see the marks anymore.


Revisiting and reworking

April 14, 2007

I wanted to add a bit more to work on the oyster stitch. This stitch is amazing me and frustrating me! I’ve been making sketches of what I want to do with it. But stitching them keeps surfacing problems. I’ve been ripping or abandoning about half of what I’ve been stitching. I keep wanting to try more options and stitch more of my sketches. Some times I laugh at myself, why do I keep going when I keep failing? I’m like a little one who keeps trying to walk no matter how many bumps!


To continue overcoming curves and circles I stitched two more attempts. In the first I abandon all hopes of a laurel wreath and just added two flowers. Two more problems surfaced: flower centers and centering of the right flower in the curve.


I’ve been whip stitching and making small loops to bring greater control to the thread between the oyster stitches.

a spiral couching some radiating lines


And then with the purpose of improving ideas from previous days–these re-dos. In the first the ribbon is still showing, but it’s looking better. As previously evident, I did find smaller beads; the results are in the second.

tstc15eleafcouching.png tstc15ebeadsandpearls.png

The big and the small

April 13, 2007

I tried out a new tool in Photoshop Elements–text. I wanted to put the names of the threads I was using beside the sample. I hope it makes it easier to follow what I was testing. I wanted to also try an experiment about how big I could make the stitch (fourth from top). I don’t think I exhausted that! If I’d kept repeating the loops I think I could have gone a few more rounds, but I’m not sure how sturdy this would be for any thing that gets significant use.



Here I was thinking about how long I could make the stitch. But as you may guess with the blue ribbon showing through I wasn’t too happy with this project. My solution may be to try some tests where I deliberately plan for the ribbon to show through–just no time for more tests today.

Another couching idea and then an idea for which I need a different size bead–unable to locate any locally so far. Oops, now I remember where I should try–perhaps another problem solved and more fun ahead! I’d love to try this as a spiral with a small bead.

tstc15drickrack.png tstc15dredandsilver.png

A few ideas

April 12, 2007

Here are a few ideas that came to mind as I started working more with this stitch. I have been surprised how it lends itself to grids. The flower at the bottom was a lot of fun.



A few leaves tstc15ctripleleaves.png

My couching ideas still need help! I forgot to make an important calculation or two.



Step by step on a knotted stitch

April 11, 2007

These are the how to steps on my “mistake” knot (see post directly below or click this link and read the second paragraph). Some similarities to the knotted cable chain exist and if it wasn’t for the way that thread in the loop to the right catches the tip of the needle in the fourth picture it would be a match, I think. And of course, minus the distance between the chain and the knot, too.

It starts out exactly like the oyster stitch


(Due to the fabric (32 count) and thread there are 5 threads between the two insertion points where the needle is shown on this photo.)

Pull firm put not tight


Then slide the needle under the top portion of the stitch but not under the lower part of the stitch at the top.


Pull the threaded needle through until the loop on the right looks about like next picture shows. Now insert the needle exactly where the top insertion of the needle was shown in the first picture. Bring the needle back to the front of the fabric directly one thread down from the where the bottom insertion is shown in the first picture (Adjust this insertion point as needed for the fabric and thread you’re using. For a finer thread the same insertion point might be fine or if thicker perhaps down two threads). Catch the thread of the loop formed to the right with the tip of the needle and pull the thread from the needle under the tip of the needle as shown in the picture below.


Pull firmly but not tightly.


Now pull thread through, firm but not tight.


This is finished off as a single knot by securing one fabric thread under the last bottom insertion. But if going on to make an line of stitches then do not secure but use this thread as shown in the very first portion of the first photo. And then start into the stitch as shown there.

tstc15bvariationleaves.png The top leaf is smaller just because it is worked over fewer threads than the others. The leaves on either side were worked in opposite directions of each other. I didn’t see enough significant difference to change the direction but I’m sure for some critical work that might need to be done.

If you have any question about the step-by-step please let me know about that; I’ll be happy to try and clarify or revise as needed. Thanks!

TSTC Week 15: The Oyster Stitch

April 10, 2007

Sharon b has written a wonderfully illustrated introduction to this week’s stitch, the oyster stitch. It looks like so much fun. And I love the seam treatments she showed us.

I tried a few things and found it a relaxing little stitch. I just let my imagination carry me along. … Oh, no! I just went over to make the stitch dictionary link and I think all my oyster stitches are wrong! I always print out the dictionary instructions and the introductions to use until I know how to do the stitch. But this week my printer has been balky and says it can’t find some file it needs. I had to do some errands with a wait time attached. So I dashed out the door with my on-the-road-kit and worked away happily never dreaming I was messing up. I must say I can’t be too sad about this since stitching is such a good stress reducer when I have to wait. Well, in case you didn’t see the evidence before, now you know I do these postings off the cuff. Maybe I’ll pretend this is a slight variation and post the pictures anyway…look for the real stuff in a day or two!

tstc15aflower.png tstc15astrip.png