Sunday, June 13, 2010

"Columbus Heart” class with Robin King

As I’ve said before, I started needlepoint as a “full coverage” gal. Every intersection had to be stitched and with lots of thread. I’ve slowly evolved and Sharon G pushed me into the next stage (but that’s another blog) the other day.

Robin started this terrific class by having us stitch the heart background with just 2 ply of Splendor. 2 ply! And it worked.

This canvas and Robin’s stitch guide have a lot to offer. You stitch with a varied selection of threads, ribbons and beads. I was introduced to YLI Line Clear Beading Thread and I think I might be changing my beading thread from Prism. I love clear beading thread because it’s practically invisible, strong, thin and it works for all bead colors. Prism can stretch, however, and the YLI thread does not appear to. However, it is so clear and thin that it vanishes before your eyes and it is tricky to knot.

Robin included a lot of surface embroidery stitches, taking me back to my childhood and learning crewel embroidery. The Beaded Pattern Couching she introduced us to was a hit with everyone (she referenced a recent issue of Needlepoint Now and a Brenda Hart piece as her inspiration). She also used the Crescent Stitch in more than one area. I’m not afraid of many stitches, but this one has always intimidated me (other people may fear Random Long and Short, among others). I suspect that by the time I have this piece finished I will be a master of the Crescent Stitch.

One part of the class that I really enjoyed was Robin sharing her “doodle canvas” as I call it. You could see the various stitches she tried until she found her “Eureka!” stitch. It gave me hope as one who is learning to write stitch guides. Even the best sometimes have to try a stitch that may not work. It was also informative to see how the same stitch could look completely different when worked in a different thread or thread combination.

This piece will definitely be a class piece at my store this September.

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