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Week Four: Spot Sampler Area 11, Area 4, Area 5 & Area 21 (w/c May 4)

From the DJ Sampler we will cover Band 4 Drawn Thread Work: Divided Border with Chevron Stitch and more of the Cross Stitch elements including the Header and the dates.




Layout for Area Four and Area Five

Header Band designed by Susan Davis

Reference: DJSampler Instructions : page 6, Chart 1.1
and page 20, Charts 6.1 and 6.2

For the purposes of the Spot Sampler Area Four and Area Five can be treated differently than on the main Sampler design as they are stitched separately.

This means I am not concerned with cross-stitching over the couched metallic thread. And as I am using 32 count linen I did not feel the need to stabilise the area with a backing fabric to hold my couching stitches.



There has been conversation about using a ‘stitchable’ metallic thread and sizing the diamond motif so it can be back-stitched in a counted manner. Lots of choices, all of them in your hands. I tried something different again!





Stitching Area Four

To balance the upper right hand corner of my Spot Sampler I chose to use the same cobalt blue (DMC 797) as on the upper left hand side.

I also chose to start and finish each letter individually using a Waste Knot for the E as I have enough stitches on the vertical to securely anchor the tail. I used Away Knots for the other letters as I needed to weave around on the rear to secure my thread.

Which begs the question why not carry the thread from one letter to the next?

I certainly could have done that but I wanted to avoid any risk of thread shadow that may have been visible from the front so on this occasion I have chosen to work each letter individually.


 Stitching Area Five

So when ‘shopping in my stash’ for the Spot Sampler project I took a fancy to using a Colour Streams Gimp for the diamond motif that is Area Five. Primarily to add colour and then to use my Madeira metallic thread to outline and for couching.
It turned out to be a bit of challenge:
  • I needed to use a #10 Crewel to pierce the ground for stitch accuracy
  • I needed to use a #18 Chenille in order to plunge the Gimp
  • The Gimp took a bit of wrangling to get it into position and I ended up using a strand of the light blue (DMC 794) for a first pass of the couching
  • I then outlined most of the shape and couched the metallic thread and the Gimp to finish off.
What did I learn from this exercise?
  • the Gimp sits up off the ground and has some weight about it
  • the angles aren’t as sharp as I would like
  • I got the colour and sparkle I was after
  • but I certainly can’t cross-stitch over it
So a great experiment that I am glad I tried out. I think I have some finer Gimp somewhere in the stash that I might need to take a look at for my main Sampler. 🤔
There is also an idea to use a Diamond Jubilee Pin as your diamond motif or to enhance your Sampler in some way. I am definitely going to try that idea out!

Layout for Area Twenty-One

Seems I am taken with the cobalt blue (DMC 797) for the Cross Stitch on my Spot Sampler and want to use it for the same reason as before, it is creating a strong and consistent perimeter for the piece. Thank you Susan for such thoughtful design placement!

Stitching Area Twenty-One

This time I have carried my thread from one number to the next across the back of my work.

I have then outlined each character in the Madeira metallic thread for definition and a bit of sparkle.

To test the impact of any thread shadow hold your work over a light source and assess what you can see. This will most closely resemble what a white backing fabric / mat board / foam core finish will look like.

To reduce the impact of thread shadow you can change your backing fabric – for example, grey is often used for Blackwork as it doesn’t diminish the embroidery but can hide some minor imperfections.😉

If you don’t like the look of it then the only way around it is to work each element individually.

Layout for Area Eleven

Designed by Carol Bateson and Susan Davis

Reference: DJSampler Instructions : pages 8 & 9

And now to start the first Whitework band!

 Stitching Area Eleven

I used DMC Perle 12 Ecru for the Satin Stitch bars and the Overcasting. I could have used Perle 8 just as well.

I then changed to DMC Dentelle Ecru for the decorative Chevron Stitch. It came out very subtle which I don’t mind but I am going to hunt out some Coton a Broder 25 from my stash to compare. I will try it out on some of the other Whitework.

And a shameless plug for the Diamond Jubilee commemorative scissors that are available. They are set to become my Whitework scissors, if I am going to cut threads in my work I am going to do it with style!

Spot Sampler Progress

My Spot Sampler is coming along nicely, I hope yours is too.

Your questions, feedback and photos are welcome, please email to [email protected]

Happy Stitching!

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