Introduction: Embroider an Undersea Sampler

About: I'm known as Glindabunny elsewhere on the web. (silly name, I know... it was based on a former pet) Everyone is born with unique challenges and talents. Find yours and share with others. We can't have a ba…

**WARNING: Instructions for the seaweed are incomplete, and still in progress!**

Samplers don't have to be cross stitched alphabets. It's been ages since I had the attention span to do cross stitch (I was 8 the last time, I believe).

Samplers are lovely when they display a few different embroidery stitches. I was looking at some stitches a couple months ago, and thought a lot of them reminded me of organic, growing shapes. Different stitches can make great leaves, vines, flowers, or seaweed.

When I first tried some crewel type embroidery... a few months ago, I think...

I originally had grand plans of making a comprehensive, modern, elegant stitch sampler. I looked up a bunch of stitches (I found a GREAT resource here, by the way: ), drew some lines on some fabric, embroidered a few... and then put down the embroidery to stop a kid from squashing banana into the carpet.

This sampler only shows a few stitches. It doesn't take too long... so that works for me.

Step 1: Transfer the Pattern

Print out a pattern and trace it onto fabric.  Watercolor pencils can be cheap and don't usually stain fabric (but the red ones can a bit more easily).

Usually if I'm actually drawing my pattern on before I stitch it, I draw the basic design first, then add the details when I'm ready to stitch that area.  Otherwise, some of the pigment might rub off before I get to all the areas, and I'm too lazy to do things twice.

Oh, right... you need supplies.  Unless you're doing imaginary embroidery.  Man, I think those excedrin PM that I took are definitely kicking in... 

You will need:

embroidery floss in whatever color you want
some sort of writing utensil, preferably one that can write on fabric but will wash out later
a needle
scissors or very sharp teeth
embroidery hoop (optional... helps to keep the fabric stretched at an even tension
some sort of pattern (once again optional... some people doodle with a needle and thread instead of a pen and paper)

I've attached the pdfs for this sampler pattern.  One has the stitches in color, and the other just has simple black lines.

Step 2: Bull's Head Stitch

look fishies!

I'll type stitch instructions later, I promise.  Maybe.

Here's the page I looked at for instructions on how to make the fish:

Knot thread.  Poke through fabric.  Stitch a bull's head.  Push pin through fabric from front to back, then push it through, back to front, where you want your next fish.

Step 3: Backstitch

If there's already a wonderful instructable on this, I don't have to reinvent the wheel, right?

Check out this instructable from jessyratfink for backstitch instructions.

I sewed the sand outlines using a back stitch.  Then I sewed little individual stitches with fewer strands of thread for the details in the sand.

Step 4: Knots - French and Peking

sand needs rocks.

let's make rocks.

french knots make the smaller rocks, and peking knots make the bigger ones.  Here are some great instructions for peking knots:

and the amazing jessyratfink shows us how to make french knots:

Step 5: Lazy Daisy Stitch

holy crap why do I have so many pictures for this??

Make the starfish out of a detached chain, aka lazy daisy stitch.  I pointed the stitches the other way for the second starfish.  The first one has the anchor stitch on the outside, and the second starfish has all the anchor stitches in the middle.

I'm so tired.  I should've typed this thing up weeks ago... and not started it after taking sleepy pain meds.

Step 6: Barb Stitch

I used a barb stitch for the first strand of seaweed.

It's two buttonhole or blanket stitches (your preference) with another thread wrapping around them.

Scooch don't get mad I'll add instructions later, k?

Step 7: Fly Stitch

Holy hell why did I put so many stitches in here?  It's going to take me longer to type this thing up and click on all the pictures than it did to embroider!

Next seaweed strand is a fly stitch.

the little arms on the seaweed are a butterfly chain stitch.

I can't do this.  I'm falling asleep.  Can someone just log into my account and click on the pictures to add them?  Otherwise I'll finish in a few days.  I just have to

Step 8: Maidenhair Stitch, Feather Stitch

still in progress

Step 9: Single Feather Stitch

still in progress

Step 10: Scroll Stitch, Coral Stitch

work in progress

Step 11: Chain Stitch, Petal Chain Stitch

still working

Step 12: Stepped Running Stitch

work in progress