Tuesday, April 17, 2018

My Dirty Little Secret

This past Saturday my Sweet Babboo and I did an overnighter in Sharonville, Ohio which is considered part of Cincinnati.  We stayed at the Hyatt where John had been given a free night.  He wanted to stay overnight so that he could attend the Half Price Books clearance sale at the Sharonville Convention Center both on Saturday and Sunday.  The Hyatt is actually attached to the convention center so he got to wander over there whenever the mood struck him.  This was his third year going to the clearance sale but his first year staying at the Hyatt.  I decided to go along with him to help him find things he was looking for at the sale.  It became sort of a mini vacation for us.  The fact that Keepsakes cross stitch shop is in Sharonville was icing on the cake   : )   

I will tell you all about my visit to Keepsakes in another post.  For now I have a dirty little secret I'd like to share and to ask for help, assuming I need any.

John bought me several items while we were at Keepsakes including Lizzie Kate's 4 Seasons charts. I was never really interested in stitching these until I saw a couple people on YouTube showing their progress stitching them, but what really clinched it for me was seeing the model hanging on the wall at Keepsakes.  John really liked the model as well and I told him that this design would be my next project.  I started stitching it on Sunday evening.  This is how far I've gotten with the first design in the series.  I will, of course, be stitching all four charts together on one piece of fabric.
Nothing out of the ordinary here, but it's when I turn it around to the back side that my dirty little secret is exposed.
Knots.  If I have confetti stitches, or just a few stitches in part of a design, I secure these particular bits by making a knot.  If I'm using hand dyed floss, as is the case in this design, I both start and end with a knot.  Running the floss under a few stitches to secure these very small bits at the start and again at the finish produces a big lump in that part of the design which just won't do.

My knots are not extremely huge or noticeable from the right side.  I have never really been concerned about them in the past when stitching items I knew would be made into small pillows or even flat folds, but this project will be framed and I'm not sure if the knots will cause any problems.  They are lacemakers knots made with two single strands tied right over left, left over right, and then right over left again.  It is impossible for them to work themselves loose.

I probably would never have made this confession about my knottiness if not for the fact that the house in this design has 11 windows.  Each window consists of three stitches.  The hand dyed floss will not really show up in these windows so my plan was to start them off with a loop start and finish them with a knot.  Seems like an awful lot of knots though and I'm wondering if there might be a better way.  I know I can start one window and carry the floss across to the next, and then to the next, and so on, but I'm concerned that the black floss will show through the pale lilac floss on the right side.  I did some research into the pin start.  Interesting concept, but not when you are stitching with two strands.  Of course for these small windows I could use just one strand of floss and double stitch each leg.

Any thoughts?  The knots really just cushion themselves into the stitch(es) surrounding them so maybe I'm making much ado about nothing and embarrassing myself for no reason.  Will anyone else dare to admit that they use knots?  Perhaps we can get t-shirts made ... Knotty Girls Unite, or I'm a Knotty Girl!


gracie said...

Is it possible to do the windows last and then be able to weave into the house stitches?

Jo Ann said...


I always use the Pin Stitch ~ or Pinhead Stitch to solve this dirty little secret. Here is a video that may help you.


There are many more sites and videos if you just Google Pin Stitch.

Hope this helps. NO KNOTS, Jo Ann :}

Purple Pixie Dust said...

I never use knots at all. I double my one thread to loop the first stitch and then run the thread under the stitches at the back to fasten off the row. I do the same with one or two stitches and never seem to have any problems but I have always done it this way. I never use knots excepted for french knots. I don't know what else to say, I would not run black thread along the back of your stitching if the other colours are lighter. Will show thru. Good luck hugs

marly said...

I am knotty. But my method is different. I slip the needle through the center of the two threads on back of the stitch twice creating a loop, then slip the needle through it to create a knot. Sometimes twice, the second splitting between the two treads of the loop. The ends are pulled opposite under the stitches. The framer where I worked would add a very thin layer of fleece (not batting) under the piece when there was bunching of threads, they buried into it. I carry over threads many times and add acid free tissue paper or thin muslin beneath those areas when finishing so they aren't seen from the front. Since the majority of my work ends with a thin fusible interfacing, that sort of secures threads from loosening. I'm sure what you're doing is a good method and I don't have issues with knotty stitchers.

Kaisievic said...

Oooh, wish that I could help you but I am strictly a No Knot girl (and idea for another t-shirt, maybe?) hugs, Kaye

Robin in Virginia said...

I would do the windows last and then weave to end the thread within the house threads. If that makes sense! Even with using a pinhead stitch to start, I may make a small knot to end. Your Spring piece looks good, Shirlee.

capecodgirl565 said...

I am with Marly. I use knots all the time. I too use a thin layer of batting under my pieces when framing and I have NEVER been able to detect a knot on anything.

butterfly said...

I am not a knot girl.
Lovely stitching .
We use to love staying at the Hyatt hotel around the UK .
Sounds like a nice weekend .

Vickie said...

I usually use one strand of floss and double stitch it when I am dealing with a small amount of stitching like that so that I do not have to carry the black floss over.

Vicki said...

I don't use knots. I double loop my start and slip under stitches to finish. For very few stitches I've used Marly's method of a small double slip. I think if knots work for you and they don't produce lumpiness in your project, keep on using that method. Stitching is so individualized, whatever works for you, works for you!

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

I'm not a knotty knotter either! I would also stitch the windows last and secure them under the house threads.
But you do you, the stitchy police are not coming to check your backside any time soon!

Julie said...

Like the others I would secure the thread under the house's stitches.