Welcome to Part 2 of our first annual Embroidered Easter Egg SAL. In this stitch-a-long (SAL), we’re using traditional, hand embroidery stitches to make a simple egg that can be finished as a puffed ornament. You can get the free pattern here.
In Part 1 of the SAL, we selected our thread colors, printed the pattern and marked the fabric. This week, we’re on to the stitching, starting with the center band of the egg.
The designs are stitched using 3 strands of DMC 6-strand embroidery floss and DMC Variations floss.
To work the cennter band, I’m using DMC 6-strand floss in color 954 and DMC Variations floss in color 4075. I’ve worked the center line in back stitch, and the small leaves using detached chain stitch.
I’ve started my thread using a waste know, so that I won’t have any knots on the reverse side of my work.
Knots can cause bumps and an uneven surface on the back side of the piece, and don’t secure the thread very well – knots usually find a way of coming undone when the piece is handled or laundered!
To make a waste knot, knot the end of the thread opposite the needle and insert the needle into the fabric several inches away from the area where the stitching will be started.
Work the stitch as you normally would. When you reach the end of the thread, weave the needle through the stitching on the back side of the work. Then, trim the knot and thread the tail through the needle.
Weave this tail through the stitching on the back side of the work as well.
Voila! The thread is secure, and you have no knots!
Use an away knot anytime you need to start a length of thread where there is no existing stitching to weave the ends into.
After working the center band, I worked the loopy designs on each side of the band in chain stitch. You’ll notice that I have not yet stitched the French knots in this area – I’ll stitch those at the very end so they stay secure and don’t get handled a lot.
I used DMC Variations floss in color 4120 and love the look – it’s so much prettier than a solid color and really makes the design pop!
In my original egg, which I used to illustrate making a puffed ornament, I worked this area in back stitch using solid thread. I thought it was a bit bland and boring, so I added some additional straight stitch and French knot accents. By choosing a thicker stitch and a variegated thread, the area doesn’t need the additional oomph on this egg.
After working the loopy lines, I worked the lines along each side of the center band in color 209 in back stitch.
The design is starting to take shape! In Part 3, which will post in a few days, I’ll show you how to work the double herringbone stitch bands, the threaded running stitch, the zigzag chain stitch, and the end caps of the eggs.