THE FERN STITCH

Today I thought it might be fun to learn a new stitch. The stitch I am going to show you is called the FERN STITCH. It reminds me of the FEATHER STITCH which I tackled in an earlier post HERE

 Here is an example of the feather stitch.

Here is an example of the feather stitch.

What I love about the FERN STITCH is that is is very plant like. As it's name suggests, it resembles a delicate leaf. It is great for use in making trees, leaves, plants, corals, and seaweeds just to name a few. It is easy to make on a curved line for variation and you can combine other stitches to make your own unique 'plants'

Let's dive right in:

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Gather together:

1. A WOODEN EMBROIDERY HOOP - I used a four inch hoop and a scrap of cotton fabric that had about an inch and half of overlap,  so a 5 1/2 to 6 inch square of fabric.

2. COTTON FABRIC - Any scrap of cotton fabric will do here just as long as there is about an inch and half to two inches of fabric overlap so that the fabric is nice and tight in the hoop.

3. AN EMBROIDERY NEEDLE - I like to use a needle that is both sharp and thin but has a big enough eye to fit multiple strands of thread. I generally go with an 8 or above (the larger the size, the thinner the needle.)

4. A MARKING UTENSIL - Any kind of sharp lead pencil will do since this is just practice. Eventually, you will not need to make a practice line but I find a guideline to be very helpful when learning this stitch.

5. EMBROIDERY FLOSS - I like six stranded cotton embroidery floss.

6. SCISSORS - A nice little sharp pair of scissors for cutting the thread.

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Start by using your marking utensil to make a straight line down the center of your fabric. Thread your needle and make at knot at the other end. I used all six strands so it would be more visible but as a general rule, I tend to use three threads. 

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Start by bringing your needle up from the back of the hoop about 1/4 down on the line you marked (It is hard to see the top of my line since it is a little faded.) Pull the needle all the way through letting the knot catch at the back.

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Once you have pulled your needle all the way through, bring it back down at the very top of the line you marked, kind of like you would if you were making the BACKSTITCH.

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You brought the needle up at "1", back down at "2" and now you bring the needle back up at "3" which is to the left of "2" and slightly beneath it. Pull the needle all the way through.

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After bringing the needle up at "3" you bring it back down into "1", the same hole you brought the needle up in the very beginning.

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Once you have brought the needle down at "1" , bring the needle back up at "4" which is to the right of "2" and slightly beneath it parallel to "3".

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After bringing your needle up at "4" and pulling it all the way through, bring your needle back down at "1" again. 

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Up at "5", back down at "6".

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Up at "7" to the right of "6" and slightly below.

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Now that you learned the fern stitch try experimenting with it on different shapes. Make a curly shape with your pencil.

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 I love the look of the twirl. This also further fuels my obsession with variegated thread. Isn't that pretty?

I love the look of the twirl. This also further fuels my obsession with variegated thread. Isn't that pretty?

 Play with other shapes. How about a spaghetti-ish line?

Play with other shapes. How about a spaghetti-ish line?

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 Try out this leaf shape. Use the line down the middle as your guideline and make the little branch-y stitches reach to the outside line of the leaf for a really cool effect.

Try out this leaf shape. Use the line down the middle as your guideline and make the little branch-y stitches reach to the outside line of the leaf for a really cool effect.

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Isn't that a pretty effect?

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That's it! For more variation, add some FRENCH KNOTS or some LAZY DAISY stitches to the 'branches'. Tiny STRAIGHT STITCHES add  the nice effect of a tiny bud.

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Thanks so much for stopping by!

Hope you have enjoyed adding this fun new stitch to your toolbox.

Warmly,

Pam