I’m trying to work my way through my stash of kits at the moment so at the weekend I had a browse through and pulled out a pretty Rowandene kit called Roadside Pink Campion. Rowandene have quite a distinct style of embroidery with layers of chiffon and simple embroidery stitches making lovely nature scenes. I always make a beeline for their stand at any show as they always have an activity table where for about £5 you can sit and embroidery a little flower scene, it’s like a calm oasis in the midst of the hustle and bustle of a show, time for a much needed sit down usually too! I think I bought this kit at the last show I went to, which seems an age ago!
The base fabric has the basic outlines printed on so you can just overlay the chiffon and start stitching. There’s one large piece of green chiffon which covers the whole piece and then several squares in pink,blue, yellow and lime green to overlay.
The instructions give an order to stitch everything in, first flower was the cow parsley stitched with stem stitch and french knots. Three strands of DMC are used for most of the embroidery which gives quite a chunky but effective look.
The foxgloves came next. The main spires are stitched with short straight stitches, I wasn’t sure about this to start with but once I got going I liked it. There’s a few spires of french knots too to give the idea of ones deeper in the hedgerow. The big foxglove leaves were supposed to be in satin stitch however I decided to use a stitch I’ve just learned on my stitchwheel, closed fly stitch. It’s worked well though I’m not sure it’s in keeping with the rest of the embroidery…
As well as DMC threads, the kits also include wools, there were two shades of green wool. At first I really wasn’t sure about using the blue-green one as in the packet it looked out of sorts with the other threads. However, when I looked at the image on the cover I realised it gives depth to the scene. I did though change the thread used for the fly stitches on the right, they were meant to be white but I used a soft green-brown variegated thread instead.
The pink campion were added next, both lazy-daisy stitches and tiny circles of pink silk…
The last step was adding blue daisy flowers, I then added a few more french knots in a pretty variegated pink thread which came with the kit and the scene was complete.
I like these kits, they’re quick and easy to stitch, there’s enough instructions to make the design but plenty of room to make it your own. I added a few more grasses and french knots and missed off some metallic thread. It’s also a useful learning experience to see how to use different weights and types of thread and how to layer up an embroidery. Just need to decide what to do with it now!