Monday, May 11, 2015


Beginning today my husband has a guest wood carving teacher for a 5-day class at our home.  The teacher is our friend, Chris Hammack, a well known carver who stays in our home with us.  I prepare the lunches each day for the 8 students and have received several requests for their favorite home baked cookies.  In between, I'm sneaking in a few stitches.

When teaching, I'm often asked how I decide on what stitches and which threads to use.  The truth is that I often unpick several times before I find the right combination.  

I only used 2 threads on this flower, Silken Pearl #5, Hummingbirds & Hollyhocks, Painter's Pearl Cotton #8, Grandma Moses.  The flower was outlined with a chain stitch then back-stitched through the center of each chain stitch. 

The petals were adorned first with a feather stitch with a daisy (detached chain) stitch at the ends. Next, I filled in with colonial knots.  

The flower center is surrounded with bullion knots and a hand-dyed button was sewn in place.

A combination of Valdani and Colour Complements #8 pearl cotton were used for the flowers and stems with Silken Pearl #5, Summer Verdigris for the bullion knot outline.

The flowers are daisy stitch with colonial knot centers, top branch is wheat ear stitch which was then back-stitched through the center.  The bottom branch is closed fly stitch, whipped in the center, and the dark pink buds are oyster stitch.

 There are a lot of leaves on this project and I needed some inspiration.  My "go-to" place is Mary Corbet's Needle 'n Thread web site.  Mary's tutorials are easy to follow and she shares ideas for combining simple stitches for amazing results.

Recently, Mary published an e-book, "Stitch Sampler Alphabet".  If you're not familiar with the term e-book, it just means that you purchase it through Mary's website and then you down-load it to your computer.  Don't worry, Mary gives good instructions on how to download and will even help you out if there are problems.  Once it is on your computer you can print out all the pages or just a few.  I printed the entire book and had the copy store spiral bind it so I'm never without it.

This book isn't just for embroidering the alphabet - I used ideas from the book for the flower and leaf shown above.  It is a great bargain so click Here to get to Mary's site and buy the book.  While you are there sign up for the daily newsletter.

Now, I need to make a confession.  Remember how I was ready to start the Lollipop Trees?  Here's the first block:

 That's right - I changed my mind again and started the Roseville Album instead.  I love the Lollipop Trees but decided that the blocks were too similar and I would get bored.  No boredom here!


  1. Your stitching is amazing. Love the colour combinations! Thank you for sharing the link.

  2. Love the combination of stitches and colours you've used on these examples Kerry! Thanks for mentioning my threads :)

  3. Ha! You have to go with your muse. Great link, lovely block.

  4. Great tips, fantastic blog!!!!


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