Stitch 1 Take a Stitch Tuesday 2018

It is time to announce the first stitch in TAST 2018. But first, let me welcome you all to Take a Stitch Tuesday 2018!  TAST is always interesting, but particularly the early part of the challenge – as the first 20 or so stitches are the foundation stitches of hand embroidery.

To be honest, if you are totally new to embroidery, then a good place to start is to learn these first 20 or so stitches and master the hand movements associated with them. This will give you the skill to pick up most other stitches. In other words, it will give you the basics, or foundation for many other stitches. Sometimes, you will combine two or more foundation stitches to form another stitch.  Or you will add one or two little extra movements to form a new stitch. So if you want to learn the basics, I recommend that you take up the challenge for at least the first 20 weeks. I reckon that by the end of 20 weeks, you will be so addicted that not completing the rest of the stitches in TAST would feel like a huge lost opportunity in your life!

running stitch sample
Stitch 1 for Take-a-Stitch-Tuesday 2018 is running stitch. And just bear with me for a moment, because at first glance, it looks too simple for words. To be honest, it is an easy stitch – but it is also tremendously versatile. On the instruction page for running stitch, I highlight some of its many uses and list some of the main the techniques that use running stitch, alongside the instructions on how to work it.

running stitch pattern darning sample 3

Beyond TAST

For those who have done TAST before or if you already know the basic embroidery stitches, then I suggest you join in on the Beyond TAST challenge. Beyond TAST runs concurrently with TAST see the TAST FAQ for more details. No need to sign up just join in.  The main point with Beyond TAST is to take a block of time – a month – to explore in depth a family of stitches or stitching styles, or an aspect of design. You can work a small project or simply explore the stitch for the next month.

Running stitch is the basis of Pattern darning which creates very attractive designs by changing the length of the stitches and the spacing between them. This technique is also used in Kogin work from Japan. For the first season in Beyond TAST, I encourage people to explore what is possible with this simple stitch. The idea is to discover for yourself what is possible with this stitch but also share your discoveries with others in the TAST group so that beginners can see how even the most basic of stitches can be used creatively in a contemporary setting.

As a tip for inspiration, if you Google Pattern Darning or Kogin embroidery you will discover lots of information online, resources and Pinterest boards on the topic.


How to take part in the Take a Stitch Tuesday challenge

If you are new to hand embroidery your challenge is to learn the stitches. So Learn stitch 1 and share what you have learnt. If you are an experienced embroiderer enjoy Beyond TAST and explore this stitch for a month. Try and give your work a modern twist and share it online so beginners can see what can be done with a little imagination.

Where to share

Stitch a sample of stitch 1, photograph it, put in online on your blog or Flickr site, and share it in the  TAST facebook group or where ever you hang out online. If you have a blog leave a comment on the running stitch page with your full web address. Don’t forget the ‘HTTP’ bit of the web address so that your address becomes a live link. That way, people can just click to visit your site and see what you have done.  For Flickr people, the group is Take a Stitch Tuesday. Hashtags are #TASTembroidery and #PintangleTAST on places like Instagram etc.

If you need more information the challenge guidelines are on the TAST FAQ page.

Crazy quilt template set 2 Have you seen my Stitchers’ Templates?

As someone who loves crazy quilting and embroidery, I designed these templates with other stitchers in mind. With my templates, you can create hundreds of different patterns to apply to your stitching and crazy quilting projects. They are easy to use, totally clear so you can position them accurately and they are compact enough to slip neatly into your sewing box.

Templates set 1 you will find here 
Templates set 2 you will find here 
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For the Love of Stitching Sampler Band 545

running  pattern darning sampleThis area is part of section 37 on of the For Love of Stitching band sampler. Stitches on this band are running stitch worked in a pattern darning manner.


The thread is hand dyed silk.


A cotton linen mix that is 22 count.


This section of the sampler was worked February 2009.

pattern darning worked in silk


The For Love of Stitching Band Sampler is 15 cm (6 inches) wide. It consists of different strips of fabric which are are stitched together to form one long strip. It currently measures 24.8 yards or 22.75 metres long and I have more bands to add.

Sampler FAQ
For the full back story on this piece visit the Sampler FAQ page.

All posts in the series are in the category  the Love of Stitching Band Sampler.

TAST Week 10 highlights

Once again its Monday morning and time for a round up of the TAST (Take a stitch Tuesday) highlights. So make a cuppa and I will share with you some of the samples that caught my eye last week.

Every  week it is always hard to choose so do make sure you visit the comments section on week 10 and take a look at the links people have left. If you dont you are missing out!

The versatility of this simple stitch always amazes me but this zebra worked by Annet of Fat Qurater  I thought was exceptional.


Masha shared some Russian pattern darning 


I really enjoyed the freeform approach Jizee took. Take a look at the rest of her samplers on Jizee6687’s weblog.


There is another freeform approach over on Lin’s Arty Blobs


Over on Silk and Stitch and Digital Design there is freeform sample that employs a variety of threads.


Luiz Vaz once again, came up with wonderful imagery, this time of a fountain!


Over on Claudias blog there is a landscape worked in running stitch.


Over on Harvest Moon Ann spent time researching running stitch and did a few samples. She recorded it all in her studio journal and shared it with us.


I can not describe the joy I felt when I saw this piece Oma Rose worked a tribute to Irene Copping a woman we both know and were influenced by. When Oma was young she had her as a sewing teacher. Years later, I worked with Irene Copping when I ran the young stitchers group at our local guild. When I saw this tribute it literally bought tears to my eyes!

Other groups and networks

There is a Facebook TAST 2012 page,   stitchin fingers group and the flickr TAST site. All these sub groups are set up at request of members.

Although I do watch these groups my main focus is here and if you want to contact me do so here as with so much activity I might miss you on the other sites.


Full Guidelines and links to stitches covered in previous weeks are on the TAST FAQ page

All posts relating to TAST are in the Challenges –  Take a Stitch Tuesday category