Some designs work well in both blackwork and cross stitch, as the lacemakers on this page show.
But do you have to make a choice? Why not stitch both!
Originally designed for the National Christmas Lacemaker's Fair, which took place in Birmingham each year, this wonderful cross stitch design was a best seller from the very first day. In fact, it sold out on both days of the event and has continued to be extremely popular.
She brings together two of my favourite crafts, the relaxation of cross stitching and the intricate nature of lacemaking.
The Lacemaker is such an easy design to stitch that anyone can achieve excellent results. She is a delight to work and, being relatively small, she is a wonderful design for a beginner to cross stitch.
After the fun of stitching her, you can frame your stitching and decorate your craft room (or that or a lacemaking friend), meaning you can enjoy her for years to come.
Do you know a lacemaker whose hands fly across the lace pillow, moving bobbins at the speed of light? Then, at the end of all that hard work, she removes the pins and the most delicate piece of lace appears!
With a special birthday on the horizon, wouldn't this Blackwork Lacemaker be the perfect handmade gift for her? You don't need to be an expert at blackwork, and it certainly won't take as long to complete as a piece of lace!
You don't even have to stitch it in black - you could pick your friend's favourite colour or choose one to coordinate with the décor in her tiny craft room.
Being a small design, it won't take up much wall space but will remind her of you each time she sits down at her pillow.
There's no time like the present! Download now and have it finished in time for that special day.
Have you ever experienced deja vu? At first glance, you may feel you have seen this design before. However, look closer and you will discover our crafter has put down her pillow and bobbins and is this time embroidering on a hoop - just as you will do after downloading this pattern!
You can relax on your porch, feeling at one with the stitcher in your picture, as you both enjoy the same hobby. I wonder if she is also stitching a dress with gold stars decorating it?
Then you can frame your work and hang it above your sofa or in your office for a beautiful piece of art that you will enjoy viewing every day. Plus, she will always remind you that blackwork is fun and simple to do!
Your friends and family members won't know how easy it was to stitch and will admire your impressive needlework skills.
Ever read a short story where you have only just got to know the characters and it's all over? Maybe you prefer to get stuck into a novel which you can't put down until it's finished, as you find the characters slowly reveal themselves?
Or perhaps you enjoy jigsaw puzzles where the areas of the picture suddenly jump into focus as you fit the pieces together? Do you feel a sense of accomplishment when it's all finished? But then what...
When you stitch a large cross stitch piece you get to enjoy the visual progression of the whole design, not just the area in view at the moment. As your stitched section grows you will see the picture become a familiar friend.
By the time you finish this project, you will have spent many productive hours immersed in lacemaker Mary's world back in 1885.
This time you don't have to put the pieces back in the box when you're finished - you can frame your work as a reminder of something beautiful, something with a real link to our past.