Friday, May 30, 2008

The Friday Fact

Today is counted cross stitch. My addiction of choice! I was going to do images, but that's just too time consuming, so there's lots of links to click if you're interested. I love showing off my work to anyone and everyone.

I'm not sure how it came about and evolved into the art form it is now though. Separating its history from other forms of needlework is a little difficult. But it does date back to at least the 1700's and I think it made its first appearance on a sampler.

Counted cross stitch is made up entirely of little x's. You start out with a blank piece of fabric, your chart and floss (aka embroidery thread). Each symbol on the chart corresponds to 1 x on the fabric. Designs can be everything from simple and monochromatic to detailed containing over 100 colors. I'm working on 2 that have 90 colors each and are reproductions of actual pieces of art.

This one is my "baby". It's called St. Petersburg White Nights and was designed by Martina Weber, a German designer. I've identified most of the buildings in the completed design. She releases hers in 12 parts, and this is parts 1-4. The buildings start on the next part! I just haven't figured out which palace it is. Here's what the finished piece looks like.

This piece is from a fantasy artist named Nadia Tate. I adore her mermaids. This one is called Kimono Butterflies Mermaid. It was charted by Heaven and Earth Designs, a company that charts art work for stitching. Mostly fantasy, but they do a lot of pre-Raphaelite paintings too.

And this one is called A Favour, also from HAED. The artist is Frederick Leighton. It's a lady in Empire leaning over a metal railing with the sea in the background. I like to think it's the Mediterranean. Yeah, there's a lot of sky and that's the top of her head all by its lonesome.

I'm also in love with this one, of course. It's St. Basil's Cathedral as imagined by Terrence Nolan of Dimples Designs. The fabric is a hand-dyed fabric. I have the frame for this one now, just need to frame it so I can hang it on the wall.

I like stitching Christmas tree ornaments too. The tree is formed by a word. Guess the word!

This one was the second "big" one I ever finished. A mermaid of course, the Queen Mermaid from Mirabilia Designs.

This piece nearly drove me insane. The designer is Teresa Wentzler and she's known as the Queen of Blends. That's when you take one strand of two different colors and put them together to make a new color. This piece had 64 blends in it! But it is gorgeous. The shading is magnificent.

It's kind of amazing what you can do with colored floss and a bunch of x's.


  1. They're beautiful! What a lot of work you've done. I'm working on a hummingbird piece by Lena Liu at the moment. My biggest project was a set of 12 x-stich patterns by Paula Vaughn, each with a month of the year theme. I've put them in a patchwork quilt. Right now I need to finish sewing down the binding, and then I can hang it up. But that will have to wait until later. Winter is the time for quilting. :)

  2. I like those! I used to do cross stitch (I can't really remember why I stopped, lol :p) but I only did small projects, yours are really cool! :)