Roland-designs , Virginie's blog.

"Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God's handwriting." - Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sunday, 20 May 2018

Small rose. Free cross stitch pattern - Part 3 Petit point


In the 1800’s the economic situation in the Western world began to change, and with more and more families becoming what we refer to now as ‘middle class’ there grew a need for respectable past-times for the ladies of households who had time to spare and few activities to indulge in. 

Labor was cheap, and most families with means would employ cooks, maids and governesses; thus freeing the women of the house from most of the common chores of housekeeping. 

The home was everything, and the lady of the house would take great pride in tastefully decorating her sitting room, and home with beautiful and skillfully worked cushions, curtains, chair covers, runners and all sorts of handmade dainty things to show of her skill and diligence.

Not all day was spent in leisure, but much of it would have been employed with something or another to do with a needle and thread. Before off the rack fashion, private tailors were (and still are) a luxury, so dress making, mending and making layettes for babies, or trousseaus for a soon to be bride would take priority, but when that was done then the more fun and frivolous projects could be worked on – and became known as ‘fancy work’.

And of all fancy work, none could rival in popularity Berlin woolwork. 
  
Counted patterns for Berlin woolwork and other embroidery were easily available, and though the best ones were pricey and would be shared or traded between friends. Lower quality, yet still lovely designs were often included in publications and periodicals of the time


Counted patterns are relatively easy to follow, and were eventually criticized  by the arts-and-craft movement for being vulgar and inferior to older forms of embroidery. But no matter what they said about them, counted patterns are here to stay, with cross stitch being probably the most practiced form of embroidery today.

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The third flower is stitched with both petit point and cross stitch, a classic favorite for bringing out delicate details in flowers or faces/hands. 

I simply replaced each ‘cross stitch’ space with four petit point stitches. The rose is quite small, so it was easy. But if you would use this technique in a larger pattern, be sure to concentrate and count, count, count! Unstitching mistakes in petit-point is not fun, and can damage the cloth and surrounding stitches.


Three roses, three different styles of counted embroidery

Petit point and cross stitch

Small rose part 1 - Cross stitch
Small rose part 2 - Gobelin stitch


The small rose pattern is available as a free instant download on my website, see link below. 
I would like to challenge you to also try out different techniques and styles of embroidery, needlework or other crafts that can be worked from counted patterns. The possibilities are endless, and lot’s of fun. 
Be sure to tag your work with #smallrosechallenge  or #rolanddesigns
 

The rose was stitched with 2 threads over two threads on 28 ct linen.
The free pattern can be downloaded here:  http://www.roland-designs.com/free-patterns

Sunday, 13 May 2018

Hunn stone circles, and Begby rock carving - Norway


Last weekend we were looking for someplace  new to explore, and settled on taking a slightly longer drive to visit some Iron and Bronze age sites across the fjord.

The excursion took a bit longer than expected,  and we later wished we had left earlier and packed a picnic as there was so much to see. Along the Ancient trail in the Fredrikstad area, there are many sites of historical interest, but since we had a late start we were only able to see two of them; however we will certainly return to explore some more at a later date.

The first place we stopped at was the Iron age Hunn stone circles, a fascinating burial ground with nine rings of upright stones. In the same area are there several small burial mounts and other graves. 

After that we drove a bit more, and took a little tour of the Begby rock carvings. Those are said to be from the Bronze age and have been painted over with red paint to help bring out the pictures. Considering the age of the carvings you can only guess that there is lot that has been lost through the passage of time, but you can still clearly see the shape of boats, men, and horses.

We finished off the day by a little reconnaissance stop at the old town in Fredrikstad,  regretting  having  so little time to spare we had to hurry home in order to prepare for school and work the next day.


Hunn stone circles


A stone circle ring at Hunn - Norway
Rock carvings at Begby - Notice the men in boats.

Another picture of men in boats

Rosaline (11) inspecting some of the rock carvings at Begby

The path was easy to follow with markers pointing the way.

Norway is so beautiful in the spring, with lovely wild Anemones - Here at the Begby historical site

White Anemones - the humble heralds of spring

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Small rose. Free cross stitch pattern - Part 2 Gobelin stitch


Continuing with my counted stitch challenge, here is a new version of small rose

For my second version of the design I simply replaced each ‘cross stitch’ with two small long stiches. Tbe Gobelin stitch is really easy to do, and results in a sort of flat embroidery which is pleasant to touch and resembles weaving. 

The small rose pattern is available as a free instant download on my website, see link below. 

I would like to challenge you to also try out different techniques and styles of embroidery, needlework or other crafts that can be worked from counted patterns. The possibilities are endless, and lot’s of fun. 

Be sure to tag your work with #smallrosechallenge  or #rolanddesigns
 

The rose was stitched with 2 threads over two threads on 28 ct linen.
The free pattern can be downloaded here:  http://www.roland-designs.com/free-patterns





Small rose challenge part 2

Small rose part 1 - Cross stitch