TAST Week 14 and April Design Challenge

TAST Week 14 and April Design Challenge

Herringbone stitch idea 2

For Take a Stitch Tuesday Week 14 the challenge is to learn and experiment with is Herringbone Stitch

Herringbone stitch is another of those key stitches that many people first learn when new to hand embroidery.  I hope those readers who are attempting this stitch for the first time enjoy it and discover its versatility. There is so much you can do with it.

Try working Herringbone stitch in different threads, or on different fabrics. Play with the spacing of the cross working the parts closely together, or work them further apart, or add beads! You can work the stitch back to back and change the height of the stitches to create interesting patterns but as I say, see the Herringbone stitch instruction page for more ideas.

Take a Stitch Tuesday Week 14 Beyond TAST

Laced herringbone square step 9

For Beyond TAST I propose that readers explore Herringbone Square. Actually, I am throwing two stitches together this week, because if you follow the link to the tutorial, there are also instructions for Laced Herringbone Square Stitch too. Lacing any stitch is always interesting. Try experimenting with threads as the lacing process does not involve passing the needle through the fabric. This frees you up to try all sorts of thicker threads for the second stage of the stitch. I think it makes for an interesting little motif. You can repeat it along a line or arrange it in a pattern. Have fun with them both as they are an interesting variation. Try to take a simple well-known stitch and arrange it in a square, you have a whole different look and feel.

A break week coming up!

Throughout the year I have 4 break weeks. Next week will be the first. It allows those who are slipping behind to catch up or if you are on track you can play with stitches that interest you or simply take a break! I do this so people don’t get too discouraged and feel positive about their stitching rather than feeling overwhelmed.

Take a Stitch Tuesday Design Challenge April

If you do any research about how to compose an image you will quickly encounter “The Rule of Thirds” You will find it discussed often on photographers sites. However this “Rule” can be applied to any form of image-making practice. When designing embroidery this “Rule” is yet another design tool you can pull from you back pocket and apply to your project. As with any ‘rule’ you don’t need to apply it all the time, in every situation but there are times it is a useful technique. 

There are so many resources online about this that this month I am going to point you to a few. These resources explain what the Rule of Thirds is and how to use it. 

I don’t want to swamp you but first check out the Wikipedia entry on the Rule of Thirds 

The Total Beginner’s Guide to the Rule of Thirds

From Adobe there is an article on How to Use and Break, the Rule of Thirds.

rule of thirds example 1 for Take a Stitch Tuesday 2023 Week 14

As I have already said you can apply this “Rule” to Embroidery as well. To illustrate this I am sharing two pieces of embroidery where I have laid a Rule of Thirds grid over the image so that you can see how key areas of the piece line up with the grid.

Rule of thirds example 2 for Take a Stitch Tuesday 2023 Week 14

What is the challenge this month?

The challenge is to create your own design abstract or representational piece, and apply the rule of thirds to your composition. Have fun with it!

If you are new to hand embroidery the challenge is to learn the stitch and share what you have learned. If you are an experienced embroiderer, enjoy Beyond TAST and give your work a modern twist. And of course, share it online so beginners can see what can be done with a little imagination.

If you are looking for past TAST stitch challenges the archives are in the Take a Stitch Tuesday category

Where to Share

If you are doing the design challenge you have a month to work on your design and stitch it up.

So the idea is to stitch a sample, photograph it, share it in the Take a Stitch Tuesday facebook group, or use the hashtags #TASTembroidery and #PintangleTAST on Instagram.

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

Happy Stitching!

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Have you seen my Stitchers Templates?


Create your own designs with Sharon’s easy-to-use stitchers templates. Combine shapes to create hundreds of patterns and designs to embroider. It is the ultimate mix-and-match fun for stitchers of all skill levels. I created them to be as versatile as possible. I include four multi-patterned templates in each set. You will find them easy to use, totally clear to help you position them on your work, and they are nice and compact to fit in your sewing box. Each set comes with an e-book filled with patterns and designs that you can create and use as a jumping-off spot for your own designs. They are available now in our shop here!

Happy stitching!

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