2015 ANG Stitch of the Month -- November
by Rozelle Hirschfelt
Top Layer, Outlines and Stamens
- Outlines: This is a repeat of the July installment for the outlines plus a new stitch for the stamens. Using 2 strands of floss matching the color for each layer of petals, work stem stitch over 4 threads with a snug tension. Be sure to share holes so that the stitches on the reverse side have the appearance of double running or back stitch. Do not advance more than 2 threads in any direction as you proceed around the petal. This tighter than normal tension will help the petals curl after they are cut out. To make the reverse side look similar to the front side, turn the work over and whip the stitches on the reverse side, using 3 strands of floss. It will be easier to whip the stitches with the needle going from the inside to the outside of the petal. Begin and end all the threads in the center area of the layer.
Outline stitch on the front side
The reverse side being whipped
- Stamens: basket weave and straight drizzle stitch
- Complete the outlines before beginning the center! Begin by stitching the center of the top layer with basketweave tent stitch using 3 strands of yellow floss. This will conceal the pin stitches that anchored any threads from the petals. The basketweave stitch was the Stitch of the Month in March of 1998.
- Drizzle stitch is based on the basic half hitch knot used by sailors, boy scouts, rock climbers, etc. It is also sometimes called the cast on knot. Using a series of half hitch knots all formed the same way will cause the stitch to twist. But alternating the direction that the hitch knot is placed on the needle will keep the stitch straight. I used the alternating hitch knot for the stamens in my water lily. You may decide how you want yours to look. Try a few in the margins of your canvas. You can make the twisted version twist either way, depending on how you loop the thread over the needle. I packed the stitches close together but you might like to have fewer. Decide on this before you begin. It is more difficult to add additional stitches in the midst of those already completed than to do them as you go.
- When the basketweave stitching is complete, work the drizzle stitches in diagonal rows, using 3 strands of yellow floss, working each drizzle stitch over a tent stitch. It is not necessary to strip the threads. Just divide the 6 strands into 2 groups of 3. Use a very long length of thread, at least a yard long, as you will need excess thread for forming the knots on the needle. I worked my drizzle stitches over every 4th tent stitch, staggering the rows, shown in the diagram below. My stamens were rather close together. And there were about 70 of them. If you would like fewer stamens, you might choose to skip a row of tent stitch but still staggering the drizzle stitches. Or you might want to randomly space them. You might want to audition this off in the margin of your canvas. Use a needle threader! You will unthread your needle to make the knots for every drizzle stitch and then rethread the needle to pull the thread through the canvas. A needle threader, even if you rarely use one, will help keep this section from becoming tedious. I made 6 pairs of alternating half hitch knots on the needle for each drizzle stitch.
- Note: For the drizzle stitch photos below I used a dark tan perle coton rather than the yellow floss used in the water lily.
First loop of straight drizzle
After 5 loops
Finished straight drizzle stitch
Twisted drizzle stitch loops
Straight and twisted drizzles