Thursday, February 21, 2013

Needle Pulling Thread ... the start of an epic

And a small start it is ...

What the finished product will look like can be seen here.

I opted for the 20-count linen fabric option and am using DMC embroidery floss.
I had to use the clip to keep the pattern together because it was 
too thick for our stapler to bind all pages!

Threads and the thread chart.
I had most of what I needed in my stash and purchased
the rest, along with the linen, from my local needlework shop, Needlworkx of Plano.

You get an idea of the color palette ... I LOVE this palette.

Here's a sample of the pattern page, of which there are 15.
That's a total of 62,856 stitches.
Annabelle of Annabelle Serendipity said it looks daunting!
And yeah, it does look daunting.
But I've already tackled another daunting cross stitch pattern
so I'm fairly confident I'll get through this one.

But how does one complete a project like this?
For me --- one square at a time!

Each of those grids enclosed by the bold lines contain 100 stitches.
The thread chart has the key to the color attached to each symbol.
On complex patterns, I find it best to take one square at a time.

I will stitch into other squares, especially if there is a "run"
of stitches of all the same color thread, such as the ones
represented by the "%" symbol in the chart pictured above.

I will also step into other squares when working with a color that
is particularly different and/or brighter than the others
and use those as anchors from which to count off the other stitches.

The patternmakers strongly suggest marking the grid 
on your cloth to help keep track, but I'm lazy when it comes to prep work.
By basically making my progress one square at a time,
I find I don't lose my place.

The pattern also suggest starting in the upper left hand corner
and I whole-heartedly agree with that counsel.
Many patterns tell you to start in the dead center of the work.
I say "phooey" to that.

A well-written pattern has all the parameters and dimensions 
you needed to start on the upper left hand corner!
And the people over at Serenity Stitchworks provide very 
well-written patterns.
I highly recommend them!
They only offer advanced patterns, but if you have
the basics of cross-stitch down, and 
you follow their instructions,
you will have no trouble completing a beautiful work of art.

Just remember to take it one square at a time.


My Garden Diaries said...

Oh my goodness! That is a lot of stitches! This is very interesting to me...hmm I'm thinking I might try it but on a very little scale!!! I know it will look lovely! You are so organized!

Jill said...

Visiting via Harvest of Friends Weekend Blog Hop :) I'm now Following you. Have a Great Weekend!

~ Jill

Sewing Mom said...

WOW! Any project that complex scares me away in a heartbeat! I remember this little itty bitty ornament of cross-stitch we had to do in home-ec...I don't like cross-stitch anymore. =)

I am sure your creation will be lovely! Thanks for sharing and linking up today.

Natasha Hoover said...

How beautiful! I enjoy counted stitch embroidery, though I've never done much actual cross stitch. I love the way embroidered fabric feels =)

Pieces of Sunshine said...

You are wonderfully organised and determined. It's nice to have a long term handwork project on the go. I've done many cross stitches over the years but none this ambitious. I prefer colour-coded grids but more important is to choose the one which you most want to see completed. It will be a work of art, an heirloom.

Cindy said...

Visiting from StudioJRU - I love cross stitch, too! I am currently doing a white tiger for my sweet tweener's room redo...I love the way you photographed the tools of the trade...needlework always brings calm and contentment into my soul...

Blessings on the work of your hands!

Kelly Blackwell @ Heres My Take On It said...

I had no idea of how much went into this! All those lovely colors! So much detail! Thank you for sharing this. I have a whole new appreciation.

I'm dropping by from Our Everyday Harvest's weekend blog hop and am a new follower. I hope you can stop by and say hello.

Kelly at Here's My Take On It

Lynn Huntley said...

Hi~ Stopping by from Let's Get Social Sunday!! I love cross-stitch and needlepoint too:) I am currently working on a project called, Antique Barn a design by Paul Landry~ It is going to be gorgeous when it's done:) Have a great day! One square at a time! (Love that) Lynn @ Turnips 2Tangerines

Evelyn said...

You are amazing!! Totally awesome!! :)

One stitch at a time:) Good words for all of us.

Kendra said...

Wow, this is such detailed work and so beautiful! Thank you for sharing on Crafty Thursday Obsessions!

Natosha Zachary said...

Wow, that is Epic! (with a capital E). I haven't cross stitched in so long. I can't wait to see the finished product.

I found you via the Blogaholic Social Network and am your newest follower!

Vicki M. Taylor said...

Following via Thursday blog hop. You are a rockstar for doing such crafty things. I'm so impressed. I think you're so blessed with talent!

Have a blessed day!

Revamp Spunky Rena said...

Hi Lovely, I'm your newest follower from A Lovely Blog Hop! Love your Awesome blog!

Feel free to visit & follow my blog @


Margaret Reed said...

Hi love, love, ove your cross stitch. I use to do it alot, I still have 2 boxes of colors all color coded But I do not do it any more. I was cleaning and got them out to give to goodwill and just not able to do it. But for the most part since I have had them for 20 years, the color codes have changed. I noticed that colors has different names. But I am your new follower and check me out at, all about healthy living and awareness, something for everyone.

Katie B. of said...

Oh my, that's a lot of stitching ahead. How exciting! Found you via the Mandatory Mooch blog party. If you haven't already, I'd love if you'd come join my How To Tuesday link party, too.

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