Tag Archives: cross stitch finishing techniques

Autumn Blessings Cross Stitch

During the hot days of summer I’ve been enjoying working on cross stitch – no ironing needed.

Autumn Blessings Finished Boy and Girl

I came across this free pattern from Plum Street Samplers called “Autumn Blessings”.   I not only loved the cute, stylized rabbits, but was especially charmed by the huge sunflowers.

I ditched the linen and the magnifying glass and got out some light oatmeal 14 count cotton Aida.  I decided to adapt the pattern into two small pieces: a boy and girl rabbit facing each other, as if they’re offering the other a gift from the fall harvest.

My Revised ChartI drew it out on graph paper and added the crow to keep the same stitch number as the girl with the flower.  They are both 37 stitches high by 30 stitches wide to finish as 4 by 4 inch pieces.  I also made the pumpkin a little larger and changed the color of their clothes: traditional blue overalls for the boy and an orange and blue striped dress for the girl.  My initial idea was to have the crow carrying a stalk of wheat in its mouth, but it didn’t look right with the beak in yellow.  Maybe I should have changed the beak and feet to black so they would show up better.

The two little embroidered pieces turned out so sweet that I wanted to finish them right away.  I used 4 by 4 artist’s canvas, and laced them across the back. I had the idea that cinnamon sticks would make a good frame and their size just fit.  I bought 2 packages to find ones with the right length, and carefully trimmed a few which released their wonderful fragrance.  I attached them with craft glue.

Autumn Blessings Framing MaterialsLaced Back

Then I added a brown paper backing, and thumbtacks into the wood frame for hanging.

Finished Backs

And the finished pieces:

Finished Cross Stitch on Cloth Background

Finished 4 x 4s Cinnamon Stick Frames

For once, I worked ahead of the season so they’re ready to display from the start of fall.  I’ve also been thinking of possible projects to use some of the two fall 1/2 yard fabrics I’ve been storing and never cut into.   Are you working on or planning any autumn themed sewing or craft projects?

 

 

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Patriotic Cross Stitch Ornament

Since focusing on machine sewing for the past year, I’ve often missed having a handwork project for the backyard lounge chair or for in front of the TV.  At the beginning of the month, I decided to have another go at cross stitch using the same piece of 28 count linen I bought late last year.   Browsing on Pinterest, I’ve noticed the popularity of seasonal cross stitch and Christmas motifs across national boundaries. Besides English language charts, French and Russian (Cyrillic alphabet) are the two languages I have seen the most.   Motifs I see again and again are houses, flowers, birds, rabbits, sheep, letters of the alphabet, words and phrases.  Judging by cross stitch blogs, prim style, patriotic themes, and samplers that are replicas from early America are favorites of American stitchers.

Flag Stitching on 28 count linen

Do Americans love patriotic themes for quilting and stitching more than other countries do?  Is it because of the colors of the red, white, and blue flag, the artistic possibilities of the stars and the stripes?  Or is it because of the recent founding of our nation, what it stands for, and the fact that most of our ancestors journeyed across the ocean to come to this New Land?  I think it’s all of those, plus the early summer seasonal association with patriotic decorations due to Memorial Day falling near the end of May, Flag Day on June 14th, and then Independence Day on the fourth of July.

Finished Liberty 1776 Cross Stitch in Hoop

I enjoyed stitching this free America download from Glory Bee.  There was less counting required in this design, and I was able to see the stitches using the magnifier I had bought previously. The changes I made to the design were to change the word “America” to “liberty” and change the border to a simple running stitch.  After storing the completed piece in the drawer for a few weeks, I researched finishing techniques and found gluing, sewing, pinning, and taping to be  the options.

I cut 2 pieces of foam board and two pieces of cotton batting  4 x 4 inches.  I laced the finished piece on one piece of foam board using carpet and button thread, then laced the backing fabric onto the other piece of foam board, added an embroidered name and date panel, sewed the two halves together,  glued on the ribbon trim, and braided hemp cord for hanging.  I had trouble cutting the board, and didn’t get it even, which is why my finished piece is a little uneven.

 

Here is the finished result next to the colonial clothespin doll I made several years back.

Liberty Ornament with Clothespin DollLiberty Flag Ornament

 

Links to:

my embroidery board on Pinterest

flat ornament finishing from the Twisted Stitcher –  glue

needlenthread finishing –  lacing

with thy needle and thread finishing – pins and tape