Viewing the Cherry Blossom

In Japan, when the cherry blossom comes out, everyone goes to ‘view it’. I think it’s a beautiful tradition, they all take picnics down to the parks and sit under the cherry trees to admire the blossom, what a wonderful way to spend an afternoon or two! The cherry tree in Japanese is called Sakura and the tradition of viewing it is called Hanami.


I’ve been looking into this for my Skipton Embroiderers Guild travelling Sketchbook project as the book I’ve to make an entry for this month is on trees. Here in the UK the blossom has been particularly beautiful this year, probably because we’ve not had much bad weather, the blossom seems to have lasted for weeks, so it was the tree that came to mind when I was trying to decide what to do.

I had a mooch round pinterest where there are some lovely embroideries of cherry trees, I was very tempted to do a tree, but eventually I decided on a branch. I particularly love the weeping branch of blossom by Judi Miller but I had to consider the constraints of time! I tried hand-drawing a branch but in the end I found a picture on pinterest of a stencil and I used that as a basis for my branch.

I wanted a blue background so I used some quilting cotton, it was fairly light-weight so I put some calico behind it, this also makes it easier with starting and finishing threads. I embroidered the branch first using a space-dyed thread I bought for my flower trellis, it’s a fairly soft brown. I used stem stitch, stitching along to the end of the longest branch, then from the start again to the end of the next one, this way I made the branch several rows thick at the start but tapering off for each twig.


The flowers are all french knots with a DMC variegated thread. The first couple of bunches I did were a bit too regular in shape, I looked again at the original embroidery that had inspired me and realised I needed to be more random in the placing of the french knots!!

I ironed some woven interfacing on the back to give it a bit of stability and used the pink thread to do blanket-stitch all round the edge. I’m a bit frustrated by the crease down the side as I ironed and pressed it before I started!


It’s only small so it really didn’t take long to do but I think it’s really pretty, I’m happy with this entry. On the facing page I added a couple of photos of cherry blossom on a blossom themed backing paper. I then wrote a bit about hanami and Sakura before finishing with this haiku by Kobayashi Issa;

In the city fields

Contemplating cherry trees

Strangers are like friends.

DSC_0001 (1)

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!
This entry was posted in embroidery, Serendipity, The Travelling Sketchbook and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to Viewing the Cherry Blossom

  1. CurlsnSkirls says:

    Your page is beautifully crafter and lovingly presented! And now I know why every Spring people go to see the cherry trees around the Tidal Basin in Washington.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Maria says:

    That’s so lovely!


  3. claire93 says:

    lovely to read about your thought process, and well done on a really lovely design.
    When I have a really stubborn crease like that, I give my fabric a gentle hand wash in warm water, pat it dry and then press.


  4. kathyreeves says:

    These sketch books are really quite amazing….they are a wonderful memory for great friends, a wealth of creativity, and I can only imagine what it would be like to finally see your book after the “traveling.” WOW!


  5. That’s really beautiful 🙂


  6. nanacathy2 says:

    Cherry blossom is just lovely. Try Scampston Hall for some lovely trees. Love your embroidery


  7. your branch is lovely.
    I think cherry blossom depends upon which one you’re viewing though. At the moment I’m trying not to have my partner in the car with me because as a gardener and trained biologist h gets a bit ranty. he likes the white ones, he likes the pale pink ones, but if he sees one of the Barbie pink one with bronze leaves he goes off on one about how vile they are, why the hell would anyone plant one, and how they should all be rooted up at once and burned. It’s the same rant every time, and involves words that would make a sailor blush. I don’t know if it actaully last the full half hour, but it certainly feels as if it does!


  8. KerryCan says:

    That looks great! The changing colors of pink in the French knots are delightful!


  9. Catherine says:

    Beautiful! Very artistic and I love your page


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