BLACKWORK: A blast from the past

The Victoria & Albert Museum textile collection is superb, but one piece really takes the cake – a blackwork jacket from the early 17th Century, embroidered all over with flowers, birds, insects, and fantastical beats. The design is worked free-form in backstitch and tiny straight stitches, to imitate the woodcuts of the period. The embroideryContinue reading “BLACKWORK: A blast from the past”

Blackwork pattern of the month – ‘Facing Tortoiseshell’

Sashiko, a traditional form of Japanese embroidery using the running stitch, is a great source of inspiration for blackwork. Both techniques employ geometric patterns, and both rely on the contrast between the embroidery and the ground cloth – although Sashiko is not counted and typically uses white thread on indigo fabric. This month’s blackwork patternContinue reading “Blackwork pattern of the month – ‘Facing Tortoiseshell’”

Blackwork Pattern of the Month – ‘Falling Fans’

This pattern was created by repeating a little fan (or leaf?) that I extracted from a larger motif in Blackwork Made Easy by Lesley Wilkins. In the diagram, 1 grid square equals 1 square on Aida or 2 threads on evenweave / linen. The sample is stitched with 1 strand of DMC 3051 (Dark GreenContinue reading “Blackwork Pattern of the Month – ‘Falling Fans’”