Wednesday, May 16, 2012


I have always enjoyed doing hand embroidery even as a kid.
 Just before my family's summer vacations at a lake up northern Michigan,
 I would go to the Five and Dime store in my little town and
 buy a couple of new prestamped dishtowels.

Along with a new coloring book and crayons,
that would keep me busy while I was gone.

I'm not an expert embroiderer
and I don't use a multitude of different stitches.
Most of my project just warrant constancy and
trying not to have dangling french knots.

Getting the project for May prepped
 "Baby Days" 
reminded me of some techniques that make my
time more efficient and eliminate headaches.

1. A Good Backside Can Be A Great Cover Up

It's nice to baste a piece of muslin or light weight
batting to the back side of your piece.
If you travel with the floss from one spot to another
it doesn't shadow through.  
This doesn't work for towels, but I sure
I wish I had done this on many quilt tops.

2. Don't Rush
I'm always in a hurry when it comes to marking
a pattern.
My fabric must have slipped while it was on my
light table.  
Now I have double dots for french knots.
 They're not going to get covered up very well,
but it was a lesson learned.

Would this be the time for a dangling french knot?

3. Lazy Daisies
I have also learned that if I draw the loop for
a lazy daisy stitch, my markings never match.
Instead I just place a dot for the location
of the stitch.
It works much better for me.

4. The More Needles the Better
When I get a whole package of needles I use them.
Thread those babies up.

5. Keep It Thin
A pigma pen 01 or 001 is the
best marking tool.  
The line is so thin that a single strand of floss will 
cover it up.
Pick a color that will blend in with most of the
floss colors, just in case.

These pens are perfect for redwork.

6. Do What You Like Best
This pattern suggests that 3 strands of floss be used
for the stitching.

But in this case the details are so fine and small,
3 strands would just make a blob in some places.
Directions can be looked at as a suggestion.
Do what you like best.
 For me, I'm using 2 strands.
Until Next Time-


  1. Wow - a dangling french knot - now that's a new one to me. Got my chuckle of the day.

  2. I love the comment that directions are suggestions....oh how I believe that.:-)

  3. How sweet! You brought back a nice memory for me. I learned to embroider before any other hand work. Fun post!