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blackwork bookmarks 
21st-Jul-2011 09:46 pm
wood cat

I've been working on a series of blackwork bookmarks from Seba Designs; unfortunately I don't have pictures of all the ones I did, but I really enjoyed stitching them.

I did them all over two on 28-count cotton evenweave from MCG Textiles in antique white (which is your basic evenweave you can find in Michael's), with a single strand of either Caron Wildflowers (variegated cotton) or Caron Impressions (solid wool-silk blend). I finished them all with nun's stitch.

Click to enlarge.

First, in Wildflowers Midnight, 072:

This one, like the next, is pretty close to being fully reversible.

Second, in Impressions Pine Green, 5060:

I did anchor the free-standing diamonds to the nearby bigger patterns to keep them from unraveling when you looked at them.

Third, in Wildflowers Chianti, 278, both front and back (sorry for the background, it was a last-minute picture on a Christmas tablecloth):

An intricate one. Not my best work on the back, but the pictures of the other one I did in a different color aren't as clear.

Fourth, in Wildflowers Grape, 158, both front and back:

Alas, I couldn't figure out how to get the square-based ones to be more reversible (I also did the second-from-right in the pattern picture, but didn't get a picture before I gave it away.

And finally, again in Impressions Pine Green, front and back:


I think this may be my favorite.

I'm about to move on to time-sensitive projects now, but eventually I'd like to do all ten of the patterns; they make nice travel projects, even though I'm very spatially challenged and so it takes me a great deal of effort to work out the paths for maximum neatness. (If anyone decides to do these and wants the paths I used, let me know—I'm sure there are better, but I am glad to share.)

22nd-Jul-2011 02:03 am (UTC)
Those are fabulous. Nice work!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:13 am (UTC)
Thanks! They really suited my anal-retentive nature, which is of course a mixed blessing (I don't think I did a single one of these patterns in a way that I found good enough to give away on the first try).
22nd-Jul-2011 02:45 am (UTC)
they came out wonderful!
22nd-Jul-2011 03:06 am (UTC)
Thanks! If I weren't so backed up on other projects I would definitely be getting more Seba Designs patterns, because I really find them refreshing.
22nd-Jul-2011 03:29 am (UTC)
Those are quite nifty!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:23 pm (UTC)
22nd-Jul-2011 03:34 am (UTC)
Those are really, really beautiful. And thanks for linking to the patterns!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:24 pm (UTC)
Thank you. And Seba Designs has a lot of great stuff, so I was glad to share the link.
(Deleted comment)
22nd-Jul-2011 02:24 pm (UTC)
Yes indeed. Backstitching = one last chore to do before I'm _done_ already. Blackwork = ooh, pretty (and I don't have to worry about twisting my thread as much)!
22nd-Jul-2011 07:26 am (UTC)
Lovely! Do you find the thread slips under the threads of the fabric when you stitch? I had that problem with my blackwork bookmark.
22nd-Jul-2011 02:26 pm (UTC)
No, I didn't. I did find that some patterns did better if I started next to a particular kind of thread, but mostly I figured that out by trial-and-error, and I'm not sure I wrote it down on all of my patterns (I'm sure there's a better way just by looking at it, but again, I'm not very spatial).

The threads I was using were fairly thick, as the pictures may suggest; maybe that helped?
22nd-Jul-2011 09:57 pm (UTC)
Thicker thread might be the answer - I was using single strands of normal thread.
23rd-Jul-2011 12:17 am (UTC)
Yeah, I suspect that single-strand of ordinary floss only works as backstitch over already-stitched stuff.

You can certainly try it with two strands and see if you like the effect.
22nd-Jul-2011 10:05 am (UTC)
Wow, that's ultimate neatness. Congrats!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:27 pm (UTC)
Thank you! It's nice to share the backs with people who will appreciate them. =>
22nd-Jul-2011 12:49 pm (UTC)
Very pretty!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:27 pm (UTC)
Thank you!
22nd-Jul-2011 02:06 pm (UTC)

Those look great! I love the colors you used, especially the Wildflowers Grape and Pine Green (I think that's my fave too *g*).
22nd-Jul-2011 02:33 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I had a ton of fun picking out colors. I also used Wildflowers in Mahogany (174), which is a soft pink-brown that I liked a lot, and in Indigo (156), which is a deeper blue than the Midnight, but I don't have any pictures of those.

(The Pine Green was a substitute for Wildflowers Blackwatch (140), which was too variegated for my tastes and the way I stitched these. I also have some light green, Wildflowers Moss (169), that I haven't tried yet.)

The Impressions was beautiful but demanding, because it would shed if you picked out stitches.
24th-Jul-2011 02:58 pm (UTC)
Incredible! You did an amazing job, especially with planning your stitches so they are reversible. I think that is why I never got much into blackwork, though - too much thought. lol.

Well done.
24th-Jul-2011 09:58 pm (UTC)
Hee! Well, if they weren't un-backed items, it wouldn't have been such an issue--neat and not a lot of carrying over, of course, but as big a deal. And thanks!
24th-Jul-2011 08:34 pm (UTC)
Lovely work! I especially like the 4th, the back looks just as neat as the front.
24th-Jul-2011 09:58 pm (UTC)
Thanks so much!
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