I recently came across this wonderful embroidery technique. Blackwork!

I wanted to show you my first attempt at blackwork which is this design called Poplar Parke. I stitched this on Fairydust linen with a DMC variegated thread. I can give you exact details if you ask for them.

I thoroughly enjoyed stitching this up although shortly after finishing stitching it I learnt that the beauty of Blackwork comes from the techniques ability to be identical both on the back and the front. Sadly this is not the case with this particular stitched piece, but it’s not messy or too terribly far off.

Another idea with blackwork is that it usually would only use one coloured thread traditionally black (if you use red thread, magically it becomes redwork!) but has become very flexible with thread colours incorporating Variegated threads, coloured threads and whatever you could think really. The rules are never rigid with this sort of thing.

Since stitching this one up I have got more and more interested in this technique and though I loathe the backstitch part of cross stitch I really loved doing this work. I found it to be more free in the stitching as once you have picked up the pattern you are stitching it is easy to zone out and just make the shapes you are stitching.

I would encourage people wanting to branch out from cross stitch to pick up thier needles and learn this technique as the technique is easy, satisfying and looks amazing!

Here are some images and examples that I have found: Enjoy!