There’s a little girl at my church who has a very Scandinavian name. This past Sunday she was wearing a dress and leggings, both with the typical simple “cross stitch” patterns you find on Nordic sweaters and mittens. She was a perfect match of names and clothes! I love these two-color designs that can be stitched easily.
Companies such as Kirk & Bradley make Nordic painted canvases (pictured above). If you can read a chart you can easily make a design to suit your own tastes.
For threads, use either wool or thick silks, such as Gloriana’s Duchess Silk, Planet Earth Silk, or Vineyard Silk. Silk is particularly nice if your project will be an ornament. You need two colors, a background color and a motif color, with white as one of the colors. Second colors can be your choice but red, green, and blue are often found in these designs.
The entire ornament is stitched in Tent. If using Duchesse Silk, which is hand-dyed, stitch Continental. Otherwise you can use Continental or Basketweave. If you use Basketweave, be sure to stitch with the grain of the canvas( horizontal on top rows are stitched up, vertical on top rows are stitched down).
Hint: With designs like this I usually stitch the motifs in Continental and the background in Basketweave. That way I don’t get mixed up and stitch adjoining rows in the same direction.
Using the star template, a free download from Wikimedia Commons. Before tracing, enlarge it to the size you will want.
Pick which color to use for the motifs. Select which two rows of motifs you like from the ones charted below. As you stitch you will alternate between the two rows. If you want a bit more variety, space the main rows five or seven threads apart and add rows of one dividing line (section below) between.
About Janet M Perry
Janet Perry is the Internet's leading authority on needlepoint. She designs, teaches and writes, getting raves from her fans for her innovative techniques, extensive knowledge and generous teaching style. A leading writer of stitch guides, she blogs here and lives on an island in the northeast corner of the SF Bay with her family
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