Stitching isolated cross stitches and snowflakes
Designers love Winter and snow patterns. They're a lot of fun and bring back many of good memories.
Stitching snowflakes however can be rather tricky. Here are some suggestions to help you make the most of any snowflakes you want to stitch:
- how to stitch isolated stitches
- how to make your snowflakes nice and plump
You might have some more tips to share, let us know!
Waiting for Santa - designed by Helga Mandl
How do you stitch "isolated" snowflake stitches?
method1: carrying your thread
The easiest method is to carry over your floss on the back, from one snowflake to another. This is not the method favoured by experienced stitchers but it can do the job.
You have to make sure though that the thread will not show though the fabric once you mount your finished piece. If the fabric is rather thick (such as Aida) and the floss is the same color as the backing, it can do the trick.
Also make sure you stitch these isolated stitches at the very last minute because you don't want other parts of your stitching to become tangled with the thread running on the back of your piece.
Front and back of fabric shown above, with thread carried over from stitch to stitch
method 2: completing and isolated stitch
Many stitchers avoid carrying their floss at the back for the reasons explained above. When there are several stitches in an area, it's easy to start and finish your stitches but when there's only one, what do you do to start and stop?
In that case, if you are normally stitching with two strands we suggest you only use one strand and complete the stitch in two goes. That is / then and again / and over your previous stitches.
The thread is much less likely to become undone. To stop you can then slip the tail under two stitches at the back.
Back of fabric shown: securing your tail at the back
While knots at the back are usually avoided at all costs, some stitchers will make an exception and add a tiny knot at the back to secure the two ends together, especially if the piece is going to be washed.
How do you make nice and plump snowflakes?
You will want your snowflakes to stand out nice and puffy on the background fabric, here are some more tips
Tip1: use 3 instead of two strands
Many fabrics will let you use 3 strands instead of 2, especially if your cross stitch is not surrounded by other cross stitches. 14ct Aida can usually be stitched using 3 strands and many evenweaves and linen fabrics are loose enough to accomodate thicker thread.
This can be usuful even for other cases of snow (such as snow on a branch), to give that part of the stitching additional texture
Perrette Samouiloff - Mother and baby animals in Winter
Tip2: use a tiny Smyrna stitch
Works on evenweave and linen fabric.
Use one strand, complete one cross stitch "x" one vertical cross "+" and again one cross stitch "x". Watch how puffy your snowflake has become!
Tip3: keep enough contrast with your background fabric
More generally, make sure you background fabric has enough contrast with your lighter colors. We suggest you test a few stitches first before going ahead with your project. You might want to use a slightly darker background fabric if the design relies dominantly on light colors such as snow.
Tip4: add glitz!
Use iridescent thread such as DMC's light effect - Pearlescent White E5200 or Blue E3747
The contrast between the matte linen fabric and the iridescent white is quite stunning!
DMC's light effect - Pearlescent White E5200
Well this is all for now.
We hope these suggestion will trigger even more creative ideas and that you will have lots of fun stitching all those beautiful snowflakes. Send us some pictures and feedback if you can!
Below are a couple of patterns featuring snowflakes. For a complete selection,
>> see all Christmas patterns
>> see all Winter patterns