Handi-hour crafting – Cross Stitch Embroidery
Handi-hour crafting – Cross Stitch Embroidery


Hi, I’m Gloria Kenyon, Public Programs Coordinator for the Smithsonian American Art Museum and Renwick Gallery. Today we are going to be making crafts our May 17th Handi-hour. That Handi-hour is a collaboration with our friends at the National Museum of American History. We are celebrating the centennial of the entry of the United States into World War One. We will be doing crafts that are part of the handiwork that women did to support the Allied soldiers. Today I’m going to show you how to do some counted cross stitch based on these embroideries. This is called ‘Airplanes Over Paris’ and they’re just different versions of airplanes that were used by the Allied forces. Then you can see this is Paris and the Eiffel Tower. I’ll be showing you a basic Eiffel Tower stitch. They also did some things, so these are different Allied soldiers. You can see different French soldiers, actually. I’ve translated that one and done a version of that. You can see here. Then I’ve also done some of the airplanes and the Eiffel Tower. I’ll be showing you how to do the Eiffel Tower. This is the pattern that I’ve translated for the Eiffel Tower. To start doing our Eiffel Tower I’m going to take some cross stitch fabric, this just has small, it’s woven with little holes in it so you can easily get your needle through. You can use a hoop if you want to hold it taught, but because this is so small and this is some pretty stiff fabric I’m not going to do that today. I’ve got my embroidery floss here. Embroidery floss comes in six strands and you’ll want to separate it out into three strands so that you can more easily thread your needle and pull it through the fabric. I’ve actually got a piece that’s already separated into three. I’ll just go ahead and thread my needle with that. This is a cross stick needle, it has a really large eye so you can easily fit the embroidery floss through that. I’m just going to thread my needle. Alright so you’ll just pull your thread through and I’m going to leave a little bit of a tail. You can hold your thread in by looping your stitches around it once you pull it slightly through the fabric, but I’m actually going to tie a knot in it, because I find that to be a little bit easier to do. I’m going to start at the top of a hole and pull my thread through and come down opposite the opposite corner from that hole. Pull that taught. You’re going to get half of the cross for the cross stitch. I’m going to come through the second hole just above where I pulled my thread through and do the same thing. I’ve got two little crosses right next to one another. Now I’m going to come back up to the top of the hole above just where I came through, pull my thread through, and come back down over creating an X. That is the cross in the counted cross stitch. Two stitches here, so I’ve got one, two. That’s matching my pattern here. These are the two, same two that I’ve done. If you’ve done your counter cross stitch correct you’ll just have straight lines on the back. If you can see on the back of this one, there’s just straight lines all the way through. When you’re doing your stitches correctly, you’ll see that it’s nice and clean on the back and it comes out nice and neat on the front. I’ll show you a couple more stitches for the Eiffel Tower and then I’ll show you this final stitch to finish it off, which is the back stitch. I’m just going to keep going, continuing in the same way that I did. You can see I’ve got some nice clean stitches on the back here and I’m actually going to trim my thread. I’ll show you how to finish this off. To complete our Eiffel Tower we’re just missing this top little stitch that completes the tower. That’s a back stitch as opposed to a cross stitch. I’m just going to show you it quick, it’s really easy. All you do is come through the top of your fabric. You’re going to go just one square above where you finish your last cross stitch and then come back down right at the top of that cross stitch. The back stitch you always come from behind and come over your previous stitches and meet them again. We’ve just done one quick stitch and that has finished our Eiffel Tower. Now, it is complete.

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