Following on from last month’s article history of embroidery article, I thought it would be good to share a stitch project that I’ve have designed. Using simple embroidery stitches worked in quite a free way, it can be completed in just a few hours.

You will need :-

Background fabric – calico, linen or a furnishing type fabric are ideal

Embroidery hoop 6”/15cm

Paint – green, blue, orange, white (fabric paint/acrylic/watercolour are all fine)

Paint brush

Variety of embroidery threads and yarns in different thickness (pink, purples, greens, white, orange, yellow)

Needles (Chenille needles are best as they have a sharp point and a large eye which can accommodate the thicker threads)

Sharp scissors

See below for the stitch diagram for the stitches required 


To work the project:

Iron your fabric and put in the embroidery hoop. Make sure it is held tightly in the frame. Using a tacking thread sew a rectangle shape 2 ½ “ x 3 ½” onto your fabric following the vertical and horizontal threads of the weave. This is the outer edge of the piece you will work.

With your paintbrush paint inside the rectangle just using water initially, then paint the top 1/3 of the area blue and white for the sky, then paint a strip of orange about 1cm deep across the fabric. Fill in the area below this with green paint. Keep the painting fairly loose for a more natural appearance.

Once the paint is dry you can begin stitching.

Use the following stitch placement diagram as a guide to where you work your embroidery, although you don’t need to follow this to the letter.

Stitch Placement Guide

A – Flowers – French knots in variety of purple threads When making the knots wrap the thread once around the needle for the smaller buds at the top of the flower and twice around the needle for those at the bottom.

Leaves – Straight stitch in green thread

B – Flowers – Detached chain stitch in white with a French knot in yellow for the flower centre.

Leaves – Straight stitch in 2 shades of green thread.

C – Flowers – Star-filling stitch in orange thread

Leaves – Fly stitch in green thread

D – Flowers – French knots in pink thread (shaded thread looks effective).

Leaves – Straight stitch in 2 shades green thread.

E – Trees – Fly stitch in fine green thread.

To complete: Fill in any spaces between the flowers with green straight stitches. Remove fabric from hoop and secure behind a mount and place in a frame.

Why not design your own embroidered garden? I often use a picture of a flower bed as my starting point, a photo from a gardening magazine or one you have taken yourself is ideal. Choose an area of the picture you want to replicate, don’t be over ambitious in trying to work the whole garden! Just make a start and enjoy!

I run a wide variety of textile courses from my studio in Croft Myl, Halifax. I am running a day course on ‘Embroidered Gardens’ on Sunday 30th September. This course is suitable for beginners and those with more experience. It costs £45 which includes all materials and tuition plus morning coffee, lunch, tea and cake.

Have a look at my website to see the other courses I run. To book on any of these email me on [email protected] or get in touch via Facebook

Courses can also be arranged to suit you, for groups of between 2-12 people.