Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Mitered Bargello: An Ornament

This ornament has been in the bottom of my stash of unfinished (but completed) pieces for several years. It dates back to my wanting to resurrect some of the things I did long ago, but could barely remember how. The 4-way process has many interesting looks and possibilities - and this one is very simple. The threads used were just Perle Cotton (#3 for the upright stitches, and #5 for the background basketweave) and Kreinik metallics.

Also, shortly after finishing several of these, I started using a lot of beads incorporated into backgrounds for some extra sparkle and interest. The "jewels" are made with Renaissance Shimmer in a garnet/burgundy color. Since doing this one, I have discovered the wonderful Kreinik metallic ribbon - the 1/16" size would work perfectly for the upright stitches in the center - and the slanted diagonal elements would still work well with either the #12 braid I used here or the ribbon. The inner turquoise color in the border in bargello was also worked with Kreinik braid, but, again, the ribbon would look much better and cover well for upright stitches.

This is a design that could take on many different faces according to your imagination and the colors and fibers in you stash! Just mark the canvas as you see on the scan of mine - find the centers first on the vertical and horizontal, and then make the diagonal dots out on the 45 degree angle. I used 18 mesh canvas here, and the piece, including the outer tent stitches is 4 1/2" from point to point.
The scan of the stitching in progress might aid in your seeing just how this is done. The term "mitered Florentine or Bargello" simply means that it changes direction at each of the four diagonals - a very interesting design to play with. You might find you can even design your own just by changing the count and the size and shape of the Bargello elements! I have several more of these, which I'll present as soon as I can get them ready (the charts and instructions) - this means I'll have to remember how I did it in the first place. The little tent stitches on the inner border were added last - as an afterthought, as I needed a bit of strong color for emphasis here. It was done with Kreinik #12 braid in a bright navy.
Incidentally, Frosty Rays by Rainbow Gallery makes very interesting bargello motifs on these small, sparkly creations.


  1. Hi Judy,

    This one looks like fun. :-)

    Thanks for sharing!

    Windy Meadow

  2. Judy, this is gorgeous. I can't wait for my readers to see it! I've scheduled a link to this post to go live on my blog tomorrow morning (Central USA time). I hope it brings you a few extra clicks.