Create a Doodle Cloth and learn some Tricky Hand Embroidery Stitches.

I am a self taught embroiderer and am guilty of sticking to my tried and tested ‘go to’ stitches for a lot of the designs I create. I thought it would be a fun idea to create a Doodle Cloth of some of the more tricky or unusual stitches and bring you along for the ride – why not join in and challenge yourself as well!

What is a Doodle Cloth? Basically its a piece of cloth that you use to try out any of the embroidery stitches you are not confident with before stitching them on your precious project.

All you need is a piece of fabric, some thread, scissors and a needle.

I decided to make my piece about 10 x 10 inches – choose a fabric that is nice and easy to stitch on – a piece of calico would do. I chose a 25 ct lugana evenweave fabric that was in my stash and seemed like a nice option since I am hoping the end result will be a finished piece rather than a mish mash of mishaps! (We’ll see).

Which Hand Embroidery stitches shall we choose??

I have a few lovely books dedicated to embroidery stitches so you can sit back and let me choose some challenging ones for you to try! I have decided to pick out the stitches I have either never tried, never heard of (!) or have tried and had difficulty with.

Lets Start Doodling…

The first Stitch we are going to start off the Doodle Cloth with is called ‘Cup Stitch’. This is a decorative stitch which can be used to create small flowers.

I am a bit of a neat freak so even though this is a doodle cloth I am creating I practiced first on another piece of cotton!

As you can see by the 4th attempt I got it looking like the raised circle that it is meant to be so I decided I was practiced enough to make a better practice attempt on the actual doodle cloth! I realise this is a bit of a strange thing to do as the Doodle Cloth itself is meant to be the practice but in my defence I want the ‘actual’ doodle cloth to be a nice reference piece at the end. You could say I am making a doodle cloth from a doodle cloth!!!

Here’s how the stitch is broken down…

Stitch a Triangle – I made my stitches about 1/4 inch long but you could do a bigger stitch to create a bigger triangle for a bigger circle. Bring the thread out below one of the corners.

Take the needle from the inside, under the stitched thread.

Wrap the thread around the needle .

Pull the thread through guiding the thread down to form the knot on the triangle edge.

Continue Stitching the knots in the same way along each edge of the triangle, keep them nice and tight to one another. Work around the triangle.

You can go back and stitch another knot if the circle looks like it has a gap. The end result is a nice little circle of knots.

Tips I learned… A perle thread size 5 works better for this stitch and forms a nice circle as against a thinner thread. Don’t be disheartened by it looking a bit of a mess! Once you complete the circle and smooth out the circle its surprising how good it actually looks!

I hope you have enjoyed starting a Doodle Cloth for Tricky Hand Embroidery stitches!

Doodle Day will be back next Tuesday for another tricky stitch for you to add to your cloth.

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