Chain stitching in embroidery and crochet - My block for the Splendid Sampler #thesplendidsampler

There’s a reason that the chain stitch is one of my favorite embroidery stitches.

It reminds me of my grandma.

My grandma and the hundreds of doilies she crocheted out of an endless number of tiny chain stitches. Her crocheted chain stitches look almost identical to the embroidery chain stitch.

I absolutely loved visiting my grandma’s house. When you walked in the door you could see her doilies right away. There’d be one under every plant and lamp. Doily table runners on the side tables. And at Easter there would be pretty yellow and pink and purple ones out. She had a little “stitching station” beside her chair in the living room, so when she was relaxing and watching tv, she would be crocheting. No idle hands for Grandma.

Grandma and Grandpa. Check out all those doilies in the background.

A little over a year ago, while organizing my craft supplies, I came across a bin full of grandma’s thread that she used to make her doilies. About 20 opened spools, some full and some with just a bit of thread left. I had stored them away because I wanted them to stay just as they were when my grandma passed away. But now, years later, I decided the best way for me to honor my grandma was to use her thread.

So I started making her doilies. Stitching the same pattern she used, with her thread, and her tiny crochet hook.

“DOILY: Starting at center, chain 16. Join with sl st to form ring.”

16 chain stitches made, thousands more to go.

My first doily using grandma's floss. The green is from a tiny ball of thread I found hiding in the center of a larger spool.

I was a couple rows into my 4th doily when I was asked by Pat and Jane to design a quilt block for The Splendid Sampler. I knew immediately that I wanted to continue to honor my grandma and her doilies by combining her main craft of crochet with my main craft of embroidery, and my mom’s main craft of quilting. I wanted my block to represent our 3 generations of crafting.

My quilt block is of a “crocheted” doily being stitched with a tiny metal hook.

I love that I finally got to design an embroidery using the chain stitch with what the chain stitch always reminded me of. Grandma’s doilies.

"Crocheted Thoughts" My Splendid Sampler quilt block.


You can get the free pattern for the embroidered quilt block on the Splendid Sampler homepage by clicking the link below.

Get the free pattern here: thesplendidsampler.com

Let’s make the quilt block together! 


Over the next couple of days, I’ll be sewing and embroidering my Splendid Sampler block LIVE on Periscope.

You’ll be able to sew and stitch the block right along with me, and ask any questions you have along the way LIVE and I’ll answer them during the Periscope. We’ll hang out and craft together!

So first, go download the pattern at the Splendid Sampler by clicking here.

Then download the free Periscope app to your device from the App Store for Apple products or Play store for Android (if you're using an iPad, look in the iPhone only apps).

In the app, click the person icon and then the magnifying glass icon, and search for my user name, penguinandfish. Click follow. I will Periscope LIVE at 9:30pm central time, starting tonight, March 20, 2016, so tune in (Periscope should notify you when I’m live). Then grab your crafting supplies and we’ll make the block together.

Note: You do need a Twitter account to use Periscope. If you don't have or want an account, you can still view my Periscopes live (but not participate in comments) at periscope.tv/penguinandfish.

Can't watch LIVE?

If you missed any of the Periscopes live, you can watch all of the replays at:

katch.me/penguinandfish

I'm making EVERY SINGLE BLOCK of The Splendid Sampler LIVE on Periscope and you can watch them all by clicking the Katch link above.

You can also check out my blocks so far on my Instagram at:

instagram.com/penguinandfish (I'd love if you followed me there)

Need some help with embroidery?

I did a few embroidery lessons leading up to the release of my block for The Splendid Sampler. If you're new to embroidery, need some help transferring your design, want a stitch refresher, or want some fun tips and tricks, then check out the replay videos.

To watch, click the katch.me/penguinandfish link then click the "collections" tab on the website. Click "Embroidery Lessons" to watch.

I’m excited to work on the block together with you.

Happy stitching! And good luck with all the rest of The Splendid Sampler blocks.


best
-Alyssa


Comment below, or feel free to contact me (Alyssa) at emails [at] penguinandfish [dot] com (type out using the “@” and “.” symbols with no spaces).

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If you found this post interesting, I hope you'll join me to get weekly emails on how to craft a happy life - and make something cute in the process. For signing up you’ll also get a FREE hand embroidery pattern.

Click here or the button below to join (it's FREE too!)



49 comments:

  1. I LOVE this block!!! I can't wait to get started on it!! Thank you so very much for designing such a beautiful and meaningful block. And my favorite quilt blocks are always ones that have embroidery, so this one's perfect!

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    1. Yay, I'm happy you like it, Shannon. Thanks so much.

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  2. Squee! It's been a fun buildup and this is a sweet block! It reminds me of my mom, I certainly didn't appreciate her crochet skills as a kid. I'm really intrigued by embroidery, haven't done a lot but your tutorials are great...I have to watch katch b/c I'm east coast and asleep when you're live lol. This one will be a challenge but I'm excited to try it!

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    1. I hope the videos help out. They're at http://katch.me/penguinandfish if you wanted to watch. Starting the embroidery on mine tonight on Periscope. woo hoo!

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  3. Beautiful block and beautiful story. Thank you the sweet pattern.

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  4. Beautiful block and beautiful story. Thank you the sweet pattern.

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  5. Thank you! I will enjoy this pattern and remember your story and remember you when I complete my Splendid Sampler quilt!!

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  6. It's a very beautyfull and charming block, i'm sure that I enjoy doing it

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  7. Beautiful block, doilies remind me of my Nana, she taught me to crochet, and to sew by hand. I make quilts, and when I do any hand sewing, I am reminded of her. I look forward to making this block. Thanks for your wonderful post.

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  8. Beautiful block, doilies remind me of my Nana, she taught me to crochet, and to sew by hand. I make quilts, and when I do any hand sewing, I am reminded of her. I look forward to making this block. Thanks for your wonderful post.

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    1. How lovely. That's exactly how I feel about crochet. Grandma's there in every stitch!

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  9. ALYSSA!!!!! This block is AWESOME!!!! I love it, I also love the chain stitch!! You truly out did yourself :) See you on Periscope tonight!!

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  10. What an adorable block! My grandma made baby booties and sweaters. I was the doily maker. Now I just want to quilt. It will be fun making your block. I have missed a few. For sure will make yours and maybe work backwards to catch up. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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    1. How fun! I think that's actually how they suggest to do it on The Splendid Sampler website. Do the latest one then work your way through the others. Doing the latest one apparently makes you feel like you're on track.

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  11. Muchas gracias. Me encanta. Un saludo.

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    1. You're welcome, Juani. Have fun stitching!

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  12. This is just GORGEOUS!!!! Thank you! !

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  13. This is just GORGEOUS!!!! Thank you! !

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  14. What a beautiful block! I have so many of my grandma's beautiful doilys-- this reminds me of MY grandma, too! How many strands of floss did you use to embroider this? How fun! Thanks!

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    1. Thanks Carol. I have some of my grandma's too. I'm trying to figure out a good way to display them. I stitched mine with 3 strands of embroidery floss. If you don't want the lines so thick, you can use less.

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  15. What a beautiful block! I have so many of my grandma's beautiful doilys-- this reminds me of MY grandma, too! How many strands of floss did you use to embroider this? How fun! Thanks!

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  16. I just love your design. I have been crocheting and quilting since I was about nine years old. Love being able to incorporate the two into the quilt pieces.

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  17. That is such a wonderfully sweet tribute to your Grandma!

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  18. Beautiful block Alyssa! I'm going to try to tune in tonight on Periscope! :)

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    1. Yay! Thanks, Anita. I'll be starting the embroidery on mine tonight.

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  19. I cannot listen to things like periscope as I'm hard of hearing. Do you have more instructions written somewhere? Particularly in number of strands of thread you used and what type of thread you recommend. I have the same memories of my grandma!

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    1. That's awesome that you have the same memories. Grandmas are the best! I used 6 strand embroidery floss by DMC in a variegated color. I stitched the design using only 3 of the 6 strands. Here is a link to how to do embroidery stitches: http://penguinandfish.com/stitches

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  20. i love your story Alyssa!! I can't wait to stitch mine and show you that cute little crochet doll dress.. it's tiny! Thank you for being part of our project, we love your work!

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    1. Eee, thanks for having me Pat! I'm having a blast making all of the blocks.

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  21. What a wonderful idea! I would have never thought to use embroidery stitches to mimic crochet for a quilt block. I learned basic crochet stitches from my mom but taught myself how to read directions and use the smaller thread rather than yarn. My dad's mom crocheted too, but the person that influenced me most with crochet was my babysitter. She crocheted poodles that covered bottles and doilies that were flat in the center but had edges that ruffled up a good three inches or more from the table top. I loved watching her crochet each afternoon after lunch. I wish I had asked for a piece of her work, but when you're four and five you don't think about asking for things like that.

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    1. That's so awesome. Thanks for sharing. I learned my first craft from my babysitter (cross stitch). Funny.

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  22. That is a great picture of your grandma and grandpa. I love that she made and used her doilies all over the house. Your block honoring three crafts and three generations is amazing! :)

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