As you may already know, stitches and experimenting with stitches have always interested me. My stitch journey started when my customers introduced me to the world of counted canvas needlepoint. Back in 2012, my creative focus was primarily crazy quilting, and I began delving into the intricate world of threads and stitches. Little did I know that this path would lead to a fascination with experimenting and learning more stitches.
Fast forward to around four years later, and my journey took an exciting turn. I began receiving emails from several of my customers, eager to share photographs of their latest projects. While many of these projects featured painted canvases, it was the counted canvas creations that truly captivated me. The intricate patterns and vivid color contrasts in these pieces spoke to my creative soul.
With a spark of curiosity, I began experimenting with basic stitches, dipping my toes into the vast ocean of possibilities that stitches offered. However, the true turning point came when I stumbled upon a workshop led by the incredibly talented Canadian designer, Carolyn Mitchell. Stepping into the class as the only “beginner” was intimidating, to say the least. Yet, it was an invaluable experience that ignited a fervor for stitch exploration.
Today, I want to share some valuable resources with you, resources that have been instrumental in my stitching journey:
NeedleNThread’s collection of stitch videos, lovingly created by the talented Mary, served as my initial guide into the intricate world of stitches. For those who may not be familiar, Needle N Thread offers a wealth of resources, including in-depth discussions on hand embroidery techniques, troubleshooting tips, and even a range of kits and products for embroidery enthusiasts. You can find more information on the Needle N Thread website here.
On my blog, I’ve taken my passion for stitches a step further by sharing a variety of stitch sample videos. These videos demonstrate different stitches and showcase how various colour combinations appear when stitched. This visual element is particularly valuable. As many of you may have experienced, dyed variegated threads can look quite different on the skein than when stitched. As a visual learner myself, I find this approach very helpful. You can explore all these stitch videos on my site under the category “stitch-sample-videos” here.
Imagine having access to a digital treasure trove of stitches, a repository of knowledge used by researchers, curators, historians, and students from all corners of the world. This is precisely what the RSN Stitch Bank offers—a vast collection of stitches, each accompanied by clear videos, photos, illustrations, and comprehensive instructions. The beauty of this resource is that it’s a dynamic entity, continuously growing with new stitches being added regularly. So, if you’re looking to expand your stitching repertoire, the RSN Stitch Bank is a goldmine waiting to be explored.
Here are also a few fun facts behind the RSN Stitch Bank that you may not have known about. The RSN Stitch Bank was launched in September 2021, which was momentous in coinciding with the 150th anniversary of the Royal School of Needlework. This monumental endeavour has been made possible through the support of various charitable trusts. If it is of interest, you can play a vital role—by “Adopting a Stitch.” Each stitch entry’s preparation costs between £135 and £228, and your contribution ensures the preservation and development of hand embroidery for generations to come.
It’s worth noting that the Royal School of Needlework is a registered charity! So it relies solely on generous support from individuals. If you ever feel compelled to donate to a cause that you are passionate about, I encourage you to look at the Royal School of Needlework!
Thank you for embarking on this captivating journey through the realm of stitches with me—from curiosity to preservation. As we continue to experiment, learn, and create together, let’s celebrate the timeless beauty of this exquisite craft.