But I wanted to share with you my recent holiday stitch guide, for Sandra Gilmore's NUTCRACKER.
He's a very handsome fellow, isn't he? I especially love the raspberry and green colors, and couldn't wait to get stitching on him!
Because I was thinking this wooden nutcracker was shiny, I decided to stitch him in the shinier rayon threads of Ribbon Floss and Neon Rays. Rather slippery threads, those rayons! But I didn't have any problems with them, and they are so soft, they work nicely for the Elongated Tent Stitches I used for his hat and body. I used regular Tent Stitches (or Basketweave) for his whole face. I also decided this nutcracker is so regal looking, his crown needed a tiny Swarovski crystal in the gold cross at the top of his hat. That's included with the pattern, by the way...
I padded his nose, and of course, his eyebrows and mustache (with soft Bella Lusso). I left his fuzzy hair for last, mixing 2 strands of white Wisper with 1 strand of white Bella Lusso. Personally, I didn't want super fuzzy hair, but if you did, you could always tackle some Turkey Work for those areas.
Since I wanted the nutcracker to be the focal point of the piece, I chose a quiet background, so it receded behind - but not competed with - the nutcracker. I used a simple but elegant blackwork pattern, but enlarged it to fill the large background space, sorta like wallpaper, I guess...
And, to tell the truth, I think my favorite part was stitching the ribbon border! I've slightly padded the pink raised ribbon sections so they look like they're moving in and out of the canvas. The white scalloped border is done with DMC #8 perle, and the green stripes are 1 strand of DMC Floche.
So if you are a nutcracker collector (and I know there are a lot of you out there!), or just want something fun to stitch for next year's holiday season, please visit my website for the stitch guide. Or contact your local stitchery store for them to order both the canvas and stitch guide from Fleur de Paris, the distributor of all Sandra Gilmore canvases.