Double back stitch patterns continued

I’m continuing to do a lot of work with the double back stitch. Unfortunately, weather is keeping me from photographing much of it. The wind was so strong that I could not keep my fabric anchored long enough to photograph more than a few things. I’m hoping we will see a few sunny, calmer days around here before any more rains.

Because I had so many comments inquiring about what fabric I like to use for pulled work, I tried to take pictures of that. But I couldn’t manage that today. I’m going to try and explain what type of fabric I like for my pulled work. And it is not the kind you are seeing in these photographs. The fabric I prefer to use has more space between the fabric threads and has a nice stiff feel.

When I do regular embroidery I prefer the fabric threads be fairly close together and a more pleasant–firm but soft–feel to the fabric. The closer fabric threads, allow less worry about back threads showing up if I carry them. And this also means when I frame it or use it in some small item. There is less show through to what ever is behind the fabric, whether it is a mat board or batting. The thing I try to balance here in considering the work is how many threads and what type of thread will be commonly be stitched in to one hole in the fabric. Only if the pattern is dense or uses a lot of heavier threads, do I consider getting fabric with more room between the fabric threads.

When doing the pulled work a high contrast background is generally used to help make the pulled work design more apparent. I look for a balance between two things. I want the pulled work pattern to show up easily. If the fabric fibers are close together, the pattern holes created will be smaller. I tend to compensate by pulling the fabric threads too close and pinching them rather than holding them together with the stitch. However, the further the fabric threads are apart the more of the fabric or mat board behind the pulled work fabric will show through, not just where the pulled work design is but everywhere. In my mind this detracts from the overall appearance. Everyone has there own comfort level with this type of thing. For me stitching a little test and laying it against the final background allows me to adjust before hand and then to anticipate the finished project correctly.

Please don’t hesitate to ask any additional questions. However, please keep in mind I’m not an expert in this area, just a fellow stitcher.  Also if you have something that would be helpful for me or others to consider please feel welcome to leave a comment. I would appreciate it.

Now to turn a corner for samples.

A small grid with little to no pull. I see a flower center just waiting for embellishment.


There is little to no pull on the back stitched ric-rac patterns and firm pull on the satin stitching between them.


Medium pull on this grid pattern. I double wrapped some of this work. The camera reveals I missed a lot of it, too. since it was an after thought.


Little to no pull on the same pattern with a colored thread.



2 Responses to Double back stitch patterns continued

  1. paulahewitt says:

    Thanks for this useful information.

  2. Nancilyn says:

    The pulled stitches really produce a nice texture. I like the little poufs the pulling makes on the petal or honeycomb design.

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