Saturday, April 23, 2011

How to stitch on a thread-wrapped temari

It seems like forever ago that I wrote a bit here about how to make a temari ball.

Wrap your temari with blue thread.
Stitch happy, sloppy daisies with pearl cotton.
Spring has arrived here in North Carolina and I thought I'd share how to stitch happy little flowers on a temari. No adding guidelines or anything. Just use your embroidery skills, some pearl cotton, and bring these bright colors into your crafting. The daisies are made by stitching detached chain stitches or lazy daisy stitches grouped together in a little circle. Then you fill the center with yellow French knots. You'll need to use a sewing method rather than a stabbing method since you don't have access to the wrong side of the work like in regular embroidery on fabric.  A couple of tips for you ...

First, how to start stitching on a temari. There is no back side like with a flat piece of fabric, so what do you do with the knot?

Thread your needle, leaving a small knot in one end.
Cut the tail short. Enter the ball a couple of inches
away from your starting point.
Come up at your starting point.
Gently pull the thread through the ball
until the knot pops down under the
thread wrap. It's gone!

At this point, I'd recommend going over to Mary Corbet's site for her wonderful video tutorials or pulling out an embroidery book from your shelf. Stitch, stitch, stitch until the ball is covered with flowers. How to end off? Pretty simple....

Finish the stitch (a triangle is shown here)
and come up a couple of inches away. 

Clip off the extra thread right at
the surface of the ball.

Sometimes a bit of pearl cotton will show through the thread wrap when starting or stopping. You can gently push it down "underground" with a blunt-tipped object, like the eye end of your needle, and slide the thread wrap around a bit to cover the pearl cotton.

French knots can be a bit more challenging when done on a temari. You'll need to wrap 3 or 4 times to get a decent sized knot that doesn't get sucked down into the thread wrap. Stitch over a couple of threads to keep the knot on top. When exiting, try to position your thread at a spot where you want to stitch the next knot. If you can't, then just stitch away out into an open area, then stitch back to where you'd like to place the next knot.

It's all about hiding those starts and stops!