I tend to be verbose in pictures and words. I apologize. Feel free to skip what doesn't interest you.
So I wanted to do the Sublime Stitching stitch-it-kit cherries on a shirt I bought for my daughter. This is possibly the first time ever I've not been way behind in creating a gift. This is for her second birthday and that's still over a month away! Anyway, I digress.
I couldn't fit the three cherries in the space I wanted to put them, so I slipped the pattern beneath the shirt and traced just two cherries. I kinda half-traced, half free-handed the stem and leaf. The cherries are done in back stem stitch, as is the leaf. The stem in split stitch.
Jenny encouraged me to practice the chain stitch, which seems to defeat me at every turn. So I did a border in chain and scalloped chain (which was much less challenging). The second side looked better than the first, so practice does seem to help!
I finished it off with a few french knot/detached chain mini-cherries and freehanded text in back stem stitch (I'm not sure that's actually the right term)
The red is all rayon (which in person is very pretty and shiny), with varying numbers of thread, and the brown and green are 100% cotton, all DMC. The shirt itself is 100% cotton and very thin. I suppose it will have to be a spring outfit.
I'm thinking of rounding the gift out with a pair of jeans, the sublime cherries on a back pocket (and probably not in rayon, since the bum of the jeans is likely to get a lot of wear) and scalloped chain (which I really love now!) around the bottom and little french knot cherries at the bottom and around the front pockets. We'll see if that makes it into her birthday gift or if it has to wait for Christmas... or Easter.
Some thoughts on working with Rayon for those interested:
I love the finished look of the threads, so I'm definitely happy there. I think the brightness really gives a cherry-skin-shiny appearance. However, seeing it next to the green cotton, I don't find it to be as significant a difference as I would have thought. Certainly it seems less striking than it does when I just lay the two skiens beside each other.
I won't be putting rayon on any more baby clothes, simply because it seems like the need to wash in cold and hang dry (and therefore the propensity to not put this on the baby too darn often, and certainly not for meals) kind of detracts from the value of a little extra sheen.
As for ease of the physical process of embroidering with Rayon, I was surprised that it wasn't that bad. I had to go a little slower than normal (I'm not super fast to begin with), in order to make sure I wasn't tangling on the back of the work, and I had to be careful to make sure each of the individual threads all pulled through with each stitch. But just keeping my eye out was enough to keep myself out of trouble.
I think threading the needle was probably the most challenging, as wetting the thread to make it manageable also increased it's size enough to make it hard to fit all the threads through the eye.
knots (not the decorative ones, but the anchoring and finishing knots, 100% requirement for baby clothes, in my humble (and possibly mistaken) opinion) were difficult, but wetting the thread just a bit (basically licking my forefinger and thumb and running it along a few inches of the thread) made it easier.
I guess the only quality-of-stitching issue this brought up was due to the "pile" of the rayon thread. It tends to be stiffer and lift up from the fabric. I had to hold the thread taught from the backside as I did each stitch, otherwise I ended up having my stitches really loose. I realized this on the background cherry, which became a bit scrunched in because as I was backstitching below the previous stitch, the stitches were so high that I was actually going back down into the fabric on the other side of the stitch, instead of directly underneath it.
Oh well, live and learn. (or is that stitch and learn?
Thanks for looking!