Ready to try your first free blackwork pattern as a thank you from me, for visiting my site?
You can print this page so that you can stitch the design in your comfy chair, but please do not copy it on any other web page.
If you enjoy stitching this you may like to download my Blackwork for Beginners ebook.
Our Harvest Time design is an example of a blackwork motif. There are no fill patterns to tackle this time around.
We will use a single strand of cotton throughout. If you always have trouble separating strands check my mini video for a quick, easy way to do it.
If you look at the chart, below, you will see that this pattern is made up of four repeating corner motifs. The top left has different coloured lines and arrows on it which will help you follow the correct "journey", resulting in a reversible piece of work. Please do not try to use a different colour for each journey, they are there just to act as a guide.
We are going to use double running stitch for this design.
Find the centre of your fabric by folding it in half, both ways, and lightly creasing the centre. If you wish, place your fabric in an embroidery hoop.
Begin your thread by tying a knot in the end, then pass the needle through from the front of the work up in a corner somewhere out of the way.
Bring it back through in position to start stitching at the blue dot (5 fabric threads up and to the left of the centre) on the chart. We will cut this knot off later, when we have some stitches in place in which to anchor the loose thread.
Take your first stitch, over one fabric thread or block, in the direction of the blue arrow (vertically down), then work the following two "blue" stitches. Bring the needle out one hole to the left and using the green lines on the chart as a guide work back towards the blue dot, filling in the gaps you left earlier.
In the same manner create the mirror image in the direction of the black arrow. You should end up one hole away from the blue dot.
Work the blue diagonal stitch then branch off, again following the blue coloured stitches and arrow on the chart. Return using the green stitches to end up at the centre line of the motif again. Repeat as before to stitch the bottom left section of the design.
Travel up the stem to the bottom of the leaf, this time following the purple lines and arrows. Work your way around the outside of the leaf in a counter clockwise direction. Make the return journey filling in the gaps to create a solid leaf outline.
Work each vein in turn moving away from the central vein, then back again. Finally bring the thread back down to the blue dot and fill in the gaps off the main diagonal leaf vein.
Turn your chart one quarter turn and to work the next corner of your free blackwork pattern.
I hope you have enjoyed stitching Harvest Time.
You might be interested in my next lesson on pattern darning. This adapts the pattern you have just learned and adds a border.
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Wallington Northumberland offers a feast for the eyes of any avid needleworker. Come for a virtual tour with me.
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The history of Embroidery from Anglo Saxon to the 20th Century
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Arlington Court's needlework collection is extensive. Enjoy these photos of my favorite pieces on display.