Straight Stitches

Straight stitches are a great way to add variety to large background areas, particularly on trammed canvases. Some are designed to be worked uniformly over the piece, others can be used to build regular patterns by changing the orientation of the stitches. They are great for covering backgrounds quickly and many of them give a great texture to a piece. They are also the stitch used for Florentine work, also known as Bargello, where they are used to form regular zigzag patterns usually using brightly coloured yarn.

Always stitch with each stitch going in the same direction. Don't try to skimp on yarn by stitching alternate rows bottom to top then top to bottom; the threads will not lie flat and the work will look uneven.

Straight Gobelin Stitch

Straight Gobelin Stitch was used as far back as the Middle Ages and takes its name from its resemblance to woven tapestries made in Gobelins in France in the fifteenth century.
The simplest straight stitch, Straight Gobelin Stitch can be worked over two or more threads of the canvas. Do not to make the stitches too long or they will tend to pull away from the canvas and get damaged. Take care to get the threads to lie uniformly for the best effect.

View from the front of the piece
Straight Gobelin Stitch can be used vertically and horizontally to form square blocks of stitches as shown in the diagram on the left.

Encroaching Straight Gobelin Stitch

Encroaching Straight Gobelin Stitch is worked in a similar way to Straight Gobelin Stitch but produces a different pattern as the rows overlap. Ensure the stitches are consistently one thread to the left or right of the previous row.

Use a finer thread than usual for the canvas count you are using to allow space for the encroaching stitch.

 


View from front of the piece

Brick Stitch

Brick stitch is a simple filling stitch. It can be worked over two, four or sometimes six threads. Work in rows from left to right and then back again.

 


View from the front of the piece

Hungarian Stitch

Hungarian stitch is formed in cells formed of 3 stitches, two short and one long, with two vertical canvas threads between each cell. Work each cell separately before moving on to the next cell in the same row.


View from the front of the piece

Random Long Stitch

Random Long Stitch is stitched in varying lengths. It's irregular structure makes it suitable to organic designs such as landscapes. Work along rows from left to right and back again. Alter the lengths of stitches in accordance with changes of colour in the design and to give a pleasing texture and appearance. The only constraint is that adjacent columns of stitches should not have stitches ending in the same row.

 


View from the front of the piece

Long and Short Stitch

Long and Short Stitch is stitched in rows of stitches of alternating lengths with the ends of the stitches interlocking, that is adjacent columns of stitches should not have stitches ending in the same row. Work along rows from left to right and back again. The stitches can be of any length you choose.


View from the front of the piece

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