Making the Back of the Work Look as Good as the Front
I must begin this article with a personal anecdote. My friend Kathy Dyer, who is the guru of the needlework newsgroup, rec.crafts.textiles.needlework (RCTN), was visiting one afternoon and working on one of Marilyn Leavitt-Imblum's angels. My husband walked by and asked her, "How come your angel is facing the other way?"
Solution: he was looking at the back of her work, and it was so beautiful he couldn't tell it wasn't the front!!
We mortals can only aspire to such high standards!
For the rest of us, there are some tricks:
- Resign yourself that the back will never be as good as the front, even if you do a reversible cross stitch. The front is what's important so don't overly-stress on how the back will look! If it's a framed piece or a pillow, the back will be hidden. The only time the back should show is in an afghan, and there's a way to avoid that, too!
- Do your stitches in a consistent manner -on that piece-. Either across the row or down the row. If across, confine yourself to either the English method (complete the whole x) or the Danish method (/// on one journey and \\\ on the second). One method will produce the "same pattern" on the back. Try to avoid a mishmash of methods on the same piece. It's ok to change from piece to piece, of course.
- End your treads by weaving them under the same color, if at all possible. Otherwise, pick a similar color if there's a choice.
- Don't carry your threads at all. End them and restart.
copyright 1998, Martha Beth Lewis
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