Stitch-a-long time

Over the last couple of months I noticed a couple of blogs I follow were taking part in a stitch-a-long, sharing their progress on embroideries. I finally sussed out who the organiser was, it was Avis from Sewing Beside the Sea…so I have joined the stitch-a-long!

It’s a great linky party, every three weeks we share our progress on our latest stitching project. Three weeks is perfect time I think, particularly with things like cross-stitch, it takes a while to get a noticeable difference that’s worth blogging about, but three weeks isn’t so long that everyone has forgotten about it (I hope!!)

Anyway, I’ve just started a new embroidery project which I will be sharing with you every three weeks for some considerable time!!

Ribbon EmbroideryIn May I went to Denman College (WI college in Oxfordshire) where I did a course on ribbon embroidery. I loved it, so much so I booked another course next May with the same tutor!

At a recent Embroiderers Guild Day, there was a half price book sale, I spotted a book on ribbon embroidery. I bought it! I have to confess that when I initially flicked through it I thought it was a how-to-do lots of different flowers book. When I got it home I realised it was the instructions to make a panel of several little diamonds of flowers.

It’s a book by Di Van Niekerk called Ribbon Embroidery and Stumpwork. The panel is stunning and after a quick flick on Etsy I was lucky enough to find the background panel still for sale. The idea is that the pre-printed panel gives the outline and also a bit of depth, it is then embroidered with ribbons and stumpwork. Isn’t it gorgeous!!


I’ve never done stumpwork before and I’ve only done a little ribbon embroidery so it’s going to be a huge learning curve but the instructions look pretty good! Di uses her hand dyed threads, silk and perle threads as well as the usual six strand floss. My budget wouldn’t quite stretch to those so I’ll mainly be using DMC together with a few treats I bought in Delicate Stitches last week. Yesterday we had a ribbon embroidery workshop with Skipton Embroiderers Guild (more of that later!) so I took the opportunity to be some lengths of silk ribbon. I do have some plain silkribbon too so I think I may be dying some of my own with my silk paints.

Embroidery Threads

I’m being strict with myself and starting at panel one and working my way through the book. The first panel is of ‘An Aloe & a Spider’s Web’. The stems of the aloe are actually proud of the fabric, they are made with cake decorating wire bound with embroidery floss. It’s pushed through to the back at the bottom, but just laid on top by the flower. It does give a nice 3d effect. I’ve started with the bullion bars for the flower. The instructions call for one strand of silk thread, I’ve just used one strand of DMC so far, but I must admit I’m tempted to change to 2 strands to get a bit more structure.

Ribbon Embroidery

The silver spider’s web has a tiny spider in the middle for which she recommends an earring. I did think that just before Halloween I would have a fair chance of finding some tiny ones. I spotted a pair on ebay, ordered them (they were only about £1.80) but I think it will be too big, so I might be using a black bead and embroidering eight legs!

Ribbon Embroidery

Hopefully over the next three weeks I’ll make some progress, I might even get the spider embroidered in time for Halloween!

Why not have a look what everyone else is stitching, just follow the links to see some stunning projects;


Everyone is in different time scales, so if there isn’t a post when you first look, check later in the day. If you fancy joining us for the SAL, just send a message to Avis.

About craftycreeky

I live in a busy market town in Yorkshire with my husband, kids, dogs and chickens. I love trying new crafts, rediscovering old ones, gardening, walking...anything creative really I started this blog after my New Year resolution worked so well. My resolution (the first one I've ever kept!) was to post a photograph of my garden on Facebook every day. My hope was that I would then see what was good in the garden and not just weeds and work, which was my tendency. The unexpected side-effect was that I have enjoyed many more hours in the garden. I am hoping that 'The Crafty Creek' will have the same effect. Happy creating!
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28 Responses to Stitch-a-long time

  1. MrsCraft says:

    Beautiful work so far, looking forward to seeing more! 😊


  2. Wendy says:

    This is going to be beautiful! I’ll enjou watching this grow. Unfortunately i haven’t managed to get my sal post done, i was really ill yesterday, i don’t feel great now and i’m off out in a couple of hours for the day


  3. kathysnest32 says:

    Are you using a hoop?


    • craftycreeky says:

      Hi Kathy, I am using a hoop, I happened to have an oval quilting frame that is just big enough to fit it all in, though I was thinking yesterday that the bullion bars might be easier without!


  4. claire93 says:

    gosh, this is a very challenging project! We’ll be here to cheer you along!


  5. jessicacrafts says:

    Wow. This is going to look so beautiful! Welcome to the sal 🙂


  6. kathyreeves says:

    I have stared at ribbon and stump work for the past couple of years, but it looks scary!! I will watch this project with great interest; I am already in awe!!


  7. CurlsnSkirls says:

    My jaw dropped in admiration when I saw your top piccie come up on my screen. What a FABulous project! I did a teensy bit of ribbon embroidery years ago and adored it, so wish you much success with this beautiful piece. Know you’ll do a perfect job! Stump work I’ve not done, so will look forward to seeing how you get on.
    Are we set for Tuesday? I can shift around if something else is better for you. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Christina says:

    Oh my, I love this!! I too have seen examples of ribbon embroidery in my stitching guide and am eager to learn. I also love this specific project you’re working and want to look for the book and fabric myself 😀 Looking forward to seeing your progress!


  9. Thimberlina says:

    Wow-wee! Looking forward to these updates and seeing your new skills develop 😃😃


  10. magpiesue says:

    What a wonderful find in the book and panel! This is going to be fabulous, and what a great project for the SAL!


  11. Trisha says:

    Wow this looks amazing!


  12. This is a perfect project for the SAL as you can divide it up into completed small stages very easily. I admire you for taking this on. It’s beautiful!


  13. katechiconi says:

    Wow! I love ribbon embroidery, but mainly to look at, as I’d never have the nerve to actually do any! I really want to see how you get on, and hear your thoughts on the tricky parts and any hints and tips. Who knows, you may inspire me to actually try…


  14. Grace Amidon says:

    First your work is awesome. I’d love to join but I need to find a beginner site.I live in Vermont on 14.5 acres. Have a hubby, a chocolate lab and 3 beautiful alpacas all girls! I’m out of commission because I fell and broke my wrist, iam so tired of not able to do anything at all due to pain and cast.Anyway love looking at your site and wonder how you do all you do!


  15. rutigt says:

    Welcome to the SAL and what a start!!!! It is gorgeous. I have never seen something like this and I really fall in love over it. It´s gonna be so exciting to follow this!!!!


  16. Beautiful – can’t wait to see the end result!


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