Thursday, December 13, 2012
Tutorial: Split / Chain Stitch Combo
For those of you who enjoy stitching text - quotes, monograms, even alphabet samplers - I have a fun tip to share with you today. This little trick is especially good for script lettering, but can of course be used in loads of different ways.
As an example, I have stitched up a simple ampersand (& for &Stitches!). My ampersand is based on the one above, in a font called 'Plantagenet Cherokee'. You'll notice that my ampersand has thicker bits and thinner bits - a common effect in lettering, creating a semi-calligraphic feel.
But how to stitch it and get the same effect? I've used a combination of split stitch and chain stitch, since they look nearly identical other than scale. Put another way: although they are worked differently, chain stitch is just a fatter version of split stitch.
So, starting with the skinnier split stitch, I work up until the line gets a bit thicker and switch to chain stitch. On the last split stitch, just bring your needle up through the stitch, then work a chain stitch just as you would normally. It really blends quite seamlessly!
Now you're able to switch back and forth between the two stitches, creating a line that goes thick and thin wherever you please! To make the transition extra smooth, you can try making your first and last chain stitches of each thick area a little bit longer, which makes them a touch thinner. And as we saw the other week, chain stitch is extremely customizable, so go experiment and see what happens!