Updated July 15, 2022.
One of my favorite Finger Step Designs project pack is the Bargello Sampler.
This is a fantastic resource for those who love Bargello as well as those who want to start designing their own piece.
The subtitle is “Fun with Upright Stitches” and what fun it is. With over 50 different Bargello and Upright Gobelin patterns charted you can mix and match to your heart’s content.
One of the best things about this book is the way it encourages you to create your own sampler. For inspiration there are color pictures of twelve different samplers (the picture here is one of them). Some are stripe samplers, some (such as this one) have various rectangles, and some are based on quilt blocks. The patterns used for each are labelled for most of the samplers, so you can recreate your own.
Another great thing about these color pictures is that they clearly show how different color schemes affect Bargello. Some use many colors, others shades of one color, and one even uses white black and one shade of gray. There is so much here to inspire you.
The project pack begins with reasons why you might not have tried Bargello before. I liked it because it identified many of the reasons why people shied away from this lovely form of needlepoint.
It goes on to define Bargello and to describe the materials you’ll need for the sampler. In these sections are many helpful hints.
Because you will be designing your own sampler, the next section covers creating your sampler discussing picking patterns and creating a layout. Finally before the patterns begin there is a really helpful page showing the difference between her Bargello diagrams and the Bargello charts found in older books. There is also a blank grid for planning your sampler.
Now the fun begins with each of the patterns charted. There is a little description for each along with suggestions of when a pattern is particularly useful for a border. Sometimes there are even variations of a pattern.
Not every pattern in the Sampler is Bargello, though the vast majority are. There are Upright Stitch patterns, such as Christensen’s Woven Ribbons, and other Straight Stitches techniques, such as Trianglepoint. But because you can pick and choose, you can define Bargello however you like.
Next week I’m going to use this sampler to design my own small sampler. On TUesday we’ll figure out the layout. On Wednesday, the colors, and on Thursday we’ll pick the patterns and start stitching.