A Ladybird Inchie

At Skipton Embroiderers Guild we’re putting together a book showcasing our work and (I think) our history as well. We’ve been asked to each make an ‘inchie’, these will all be stitched together to make a book cover.

I’ve been intrigued by inchies for a while but never quite got round to determining just how you make them. My pinterest page has lots of inchie pictures, like these by Boxoftrix. I love the idea of a group of several mounted together…one day!

For those of you who haven’t come across inchies, they are basically a 1″ square of embroidery or textile art of some kind. Obviously when you only have 1″ to embroider there are limitations, but it’s amazing what people do with one inch!

After much thought I decided to keep it fairly simple and do a tiny embroidery. Whilst I’ve been stitching my flower lattice embroidery as part of the Stitch-a-long, I’ve mastered how to embroider a ladybird. I decided to do a few blades of grass and a ladybird climbing up one.

I chose a soft green-grey quilting cotton as my background, I laid some calico behind to help by giving me something to start and finish stitches on.

I drew around my 1″ die cutter with a soft pencil to give me a guide. We’ve actually been asked to make them 3cm square, which the pencil line pretty much is (by chance!) I used a variegated DMC thread in soft greens, beiges and blues to do a few background grasses with just straight stitches, a few french knots and a couple of fly stitches.

Next I used a green perle thread to make the main stalk, couching it down at the bend. I didn’t couch it any further as I knew the ladybirds legs would effectively couch it down too.

I stitched the outline of the ladybird first in black DMC thread, this helps to pad out the satin stitch later. I used a couple of french knots of the head and little straight stitches for the antenna and the legs.The 1″ die cutter gives you an idea of just how small this is!


I used satin stitch over the back with a single strand of DMC and then added three french knots for the spots. He came out slightly slimmer than I anticipated so I embroidered a line of  red stem stitch along the top edge which is now his other wing! It’s just enough to fill him out a bit.

I rather like my ladybird and I definitely like stitching inchies!

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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18 Responses to A Ladybird Inchie

  1. kathyreeves says:

    My goodness! I had no idea there was such a thing, but the samples you you chose are amazing. The ladybug is perfect for this!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good grief, I can’t believe how exquisite that tiny piece of embroidery is! Absolutely love your ladybird !

    Liked by 1 person

  3. tialys says:

    These look adorable – I love your ladybird – I think I might find the tiny size a bit fiddly but then I think that about most embroidery. I’d love to see a photograph of your Guild’s finished book cover when it’s finished.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. CurlsnSkirls says:

    Am seconding Tialys’ comments above, adding that I’d never heard of inchies and cannot contemplate anything so small. But do admire your work as that red really brings the whole thing together and makes it pop!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I’ve never heard of an inchie before but I’m so glad I have now – how lovely! Love your ladybird!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Catherine says:

    Wow! I’ve never heard of inchies, but a great activity to do together, so small but such beautiful stitching you’ve done!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. that is so sweet! I’ve also been collecting pictures of inchies intending to embroider them… one day!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. katechiconi says:

    I may just have to give inchies a go, as it’s about the right amount of work for the amount of time I can spare! Very cute little ladybird piece – be sure to let us all see the finished assembly of inchies, for inspiration if nothing else!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Oh my goodness! So tiny and perfect and sweet!
    Great job!

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I totally adore your wee little embroidered ladybug. I keep wanting to do an inchies project too. Someday! Happy Stitching.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. TechEbook says:

    Absolutely love your ladybird ! I’ve never heard of inchies, but a great activity to do together, so small but such beautiful stitching you’ve done!


  12. markmhamann says:

    Absolutely love your ladybird ! Absolutely love your ladybird !


  13. Yvonne Moxon says:

    It woukd have been nice to havd been credited for my work. Both sets of inchies that you have at the begining of the post are my work
    Kind regards
    Yvonne Moxon
    Aka Boxoftrix


  14. Yvonne Moxon says:

    It would have been nice to have been credited for my work. Both sets of inchies that you have at the begining of the post are my work
    Kind regards
    Yvonne Moxon
    Aka Boxoftrix


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