Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Free Embroidery Pattern: A Simple Floral design

Its time for an free embroidery pattern. This is a very simple flower design , that anyone can work on , even beginners. My last post was on Herringbone stitch ; So, this design should be dedicated to that and would look wonderful when worked in herringbone stitch.
This can be used as a single motif or many motifs can be stitched for a large project. Beginners can use this simple and easy design to learn herringbone stitch.Re-size this design to your choice.
I would really love to hear from you if you are going to use these or if you plan to use it in a different way with different stitches.

Happy Stitching!!!  

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Basic Embroidery Stitches: Herringbone Stitch

Herring bone stitch comes under the category of crossed embroidery stitches. 
This stitch is used in plain needlework to join flannel pieces together. 
It is also used as an ornamental stitch in embroidery. The beauty of this stitch depends entirely upon the execution. Every stitch requires to be put in at an exact distance from the last made, and the amount of material taken up upon the needle should always be the same.
This stitch is so called because it resembles the spine of a fish such as the herring.


Mossoul stitch, Persian stitch, Russian stitch,Russian cross stitch, Plaited stitch, Catch stitch, Fish net stitch, Hex stitch and Witch stitch

 source: embroiderers guild.com

Herringbone stitch is used exclusively in Candle Wicking, Crewel Embroidery, Shadow work, Indian Chikankari work and White Work.

Rule For Herring-Bone
The herring-bone (also called catch-stitch) is worked from left to right, or away from the worker. It is a sort of cross-stitch taken alternately from side to side. The position is over the first two fingers of the left hand. The form of the stitch may vary greatly in the length of the slanting line which connects the crosses on either side, and also in the distance apart of the crosses. When the stitch is once started the width of it and the relative position of the cross stitches on either side must remain the same. In the most usual form of the stitch the crosses on one side come exactly between the crosses on the other side, so that the bottom of the stitch on one side is directly opposite the top of the stitch on the other. On the wrong side of the cloth the stitch looks like two lines of running-stitches.

Here's my work using Herringbone stitch.

I need to admit that this is the first time I am using this stitch so elaborately . Never had I got the opportunity to work this stitch.
The embroidery below uses closed herringbone stitch. I just didn't want the work to be too porous.

Now, I just experimented a bit and outlined the large flower with back stitch. The result though is not much appealing.

A close up view of the herringbone stitch. It just looks divine!!!!!!!!
My mind is flooding with ideas to work variations of this stitch.

I can point out so many mistakes , esp , the crowded stitching of the petal shown above; but otherwise the work as a whole is quite satisfying.

Find all the Basic Embroidery Stitches Here

Related Posts: Shadow Work and The Indian Chikankari

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Free Embroidery Pattern : Paisley - Floral Motif

I have been getting so many responses for the embroidery patterns posted here. There have been so many requests for motifs for Zalakdozi after the post on Zalakdozi embroidery and a free pattern .

So, Here is a beautiful paisley floral motif that can be used for Zalakdozi embroidery or any other forms as one feels like.

What other ways can you think of working this design ?
Please share your ideas too.

Happy Stitching

Monday, 2 January 2012

More on Sashiko.............

This post is a continuation from here .

There are actually 3 variations of sashiko still commonly used:
Hitomezashi : Hitomezashi requires only one stitch in any given direction with the end result being a design that is very dense and usually geometric in shape. If done well, it can actually resemble fine lace when finished.
Kogin : Kogin stitches are uneven in length and only follow the direction of the weft threads. The stitching instructions below apply to the basic sashiko variation.

Significance of Kogin embroidery may be regarded on three levels.
1. The decorative designs create a striking effect and display the embroiderers’ skill.
2. Symbolically the patterns from nature, display a reverence for the environment, which protected the wearer while working outside.
3. The position of embroidery at neck, and front of bodice & leggings was believed to protect the body.

Designs Used In Sashiko
As with many other art forms, most patterns are actually simplified representations of things found in nature and are often modeled after plants, birds, animals, natural phenomena such as clouds, tools, implements of war, or written characters from the language. A distinctive element in all sashiko patterns is the use of space--Japanese designs especially make full use of blank or "negative" space as an integral part of the overall pattern.

Examples of designs primarily drawn from nature include:

CLOUD ("kumo") - clouds were thought to be vehicles for Buddha and other celestial beings and was the symbol of rulers and authority;

HEMP/FLAX LEAF ("asa-no-ha") - a motif often used in Buddhist sculpture and scroll work to represent radiating light or the inner light of the soul;

BAMBOO ("chiku") - symbol of vitality and prosperity;

TORTOISE SHELL ("kikko")- symbol of good fortune and eternal youth.

Tracing the Design
Trace your design onto the RIGHT side of a fabric piece that is approximately 2-3" larger than the actual size needed. This will allow for any of the fabric being "eaten up" by the stitching, as well as extra room needed to adjust the pattern.
Patterns can be transferred on a light table (or by using some other type of back lighting) or with dressmaker's carbon,


french chalk or a quilter's marking pencil. 

AVOID USING A MARKING PEN since sashiko thread can be very sensitive to the chemicals and might pick up the coloration. 
Consider using different colours of marks to represent the stitching order if possible. YOUR DESIGN NEEDS TO BE AS ACCURATE AS POSSIBLE. Since sashiko stitching uses a very even stitch length, any errors in the design transfer will show up noticeably in the finished work.

Sewing Technique 
A wonderful tutorial on the sewing technique is given here
I shall post more on sewing technique (with pictures and more tips) when I work on it.