No, I won’t be talking about what’s behind door number three today or offering you a quick $50 to give up the contents of that box you just selected. Instead I'd like to introduce you to the Montenegrin stitch.
Like any number of (fancy) stitches used on 17th century samplers, the Montenegrin stitch is reversible. Before working on Jane, my experience with this stitch had been a single horizontal row used as a dividing band. And I’m not even sure I was executing the stitch correctly (need to look at a one of my other stitch books to check on that). Hands Across the Sea Samplers has a nice tutorial for the basic stitch HERE.
I’ve told you before about Amy Mitten’s wonderful little book and how I would be lost without it. Jane was clearly quite adept at Montenegrin stitch and not only stitched rows that go diagonally down, across, diagonally up, and so forth, she also stitched flowers and such using it.
So back to that reversible thing. That indispensable little book details two different ways to make the stitch, and each way makes a different pattern the back. So let’s start with a peek at that since I decided to do the two lines which mark the top and bottom of Band 13 first, and that I’d stitch them in the two different ways.
So even though I told you you’d seen the last of Jane’s backside months ago, I’ll flip her over for you here.
In the top (blue) row, the steps of the Montenegrin are stitched in such an order as to make a four-sided/box stitch on the back. Cool, huh?
The other way to do the stitch is a little easier for me, guess it just feels a little more natural. The back of this version (red row) produces a pattern that is cross stitches with vertical lines between each stitch: X|X|X|X|X| But because I’m using two threads on 35-count linen, it’s rather hard to see that pattern.
From the front, the two methods produce a similar stitch, though I think the sequence that makes the four-sided stitch on the back give a slightly more braided look on the front of the piece.
Thanks for stopping by!