Needlework, Finishing, Designing, Quilting, Some Discoveries and Adventures in Stitching from Windy Ridge Designs

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Read Directions First . . . Then Stitch

I don't like to "frog".  I think it's a waste of time and effort.  Usually if I make a mistake, I work around it or I cover it up without frogging.  However, this one was a doozy and I was forced into it.

I wanted to start the Alternating Half Cross stitch that makes the green background on the floral side borders of the American Sampler.  It's quite an intriguing stitch - essentially changes the color of your linen to the color of the thread you stitch with.  So, on the lower right hand border, I started stitching - without reading the directions.  I got quite a bit done over two days, but when I was looking at it from a distance I thought, wait, something's not quite right here.

Wrong Way

So it was then that I looked at the directions.  Oh - My - God.  And I realized what I had done.  In the picture above, I was in the process of pulling out all the work I'd done.  I had gotten up above the urn.  When I read the directions, I realized the work is supposed to be done over one and instead of going in a sort of serpentine line, the stitches are supposed to go off each other to more fully cover the linen threads.   Like this:

Right Way
I have now pulled out all the work I'd done on the right hand side and have been working on the left.  I am up into the greenery and flowers now, after working all week.  This is an agonizingly slow process and I keep telling myself that I was right to get started on it so I can take a break after a while and do other stitching; not only background stitching.

After starting the Trumpeteer in order to show how I do over one stitching, I completed him before I started the Alternating Half Cross stitching.

In fact, all the work on that right side of the lower border is done.  I have the left side yet to do.  I have also decided on the words I am going to put into the two areas.  I have to chart that all out to make sure it fits right and will reveal all next time.  I made one change on the Trumpeteer.  His pants were charted to be striped.  I decided that I didn't like that so gave him plain charcoal trousers instead.  I have continued to alternate the "ripeness" of my berries too; like I did in the side and top borders.

Meanwhile, I have been reading a book I've read before and really enjoyed (not like I don't have several never-read books on my bookshelf); Wilbur Smith's River God.  Set in ancient Egypt, it is a fascinating tale, even the second time around.   I managed to pick it up at a thrift store for just a buck!

Hope you enjoyed!


  1. That sampler is just Oh My Gosh amazing--even with the frogging! I love that little trumpeter guy.

  2. I really am enjoying watching your stitching on this one. I'm of the same mind about frogging--if there's any way around it, I don't do it. But there are times when it's just necessary, darn it! Love the trumpeteer!

  3. How frustrating! It looks amazing though

  4. Oh, I'm so glad you noticed the mistake before too much more was done, Katherine! It is looking incredible now that you're on the right track--really a most lovely sampler!

  5. Thank you all so much for cheering me on! -K

  6. Oh so sorry to hear about your mistake. Your sampler is gorgeous and keep up the wonderful stitching!


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