A Common Thread- September Finish

It’s me! It’s me!

Sliding in a little late, but with a finished piece for my collaborative project A Common Thread with artist Neicy Frey.

Only the first month and already, I needed a few extra days to really think about how I was going to finish this one. (I’m glad there are 5 weeks in October!) To recap this collaboration, each month, we creatively “respond” to a classic embroidery stitch. September, our first month, was the Satin Stitch. The predetermined size for September’s piece was 24 x 36″ (we will have different size requirements for each month’s stitch).

A closer look at my finished piece-


I had it in my mind that I wanted to do something very repetitive. I wasn’t sure of all the details, but when I started, I soon decided that I would fashion a quilt block completely in a satin stitch. Just repetitive satin stitches, over and over and over, onto Kona Snow (our backgrounds are always white). Long time readers may recognize the shape of the block as being a lot like my Echo Star quilt, and you’re right! I’ve been wanting to revisit this quilt for a long time, and even though I didn’t plan to revisit it this way, it seem to work for the scope of what I was planning.

Once I planned my colors, I’m pretty sure I purchased every bit of the embroidery floss the local craft store had in my chosen blues. Actually had to go to 2 different ones. So many skeins of embroidery floss. I drew out a grid on the base fabric using an erasable pen. And started stitching.



Every night.




I was overly ambitious on this month’s idea. Thought that I would be able to do this one MUCH quicker than I realized. I didn’t plan for quite as much negative space around the satin stitched quilt block as the finished piece has. But I decided that a) I was running out of time and b) but I kind of liked all the negative space!



I struggled with thread tension and tried a few different embroidery hoops and stands. In the end, the one I liked by far the best was also the most expensive one. The Morgan Lap Stand is my new favorite, with both a 10″ and a 14″ hoop, so you can flip it to the size you’ll need for your project. I used it on the tabletop and it kept it all steady and easy to stitch on. I wish I’d discovered it earlier than right at the end though. But now I know!



In the end, with the mixed tension results I’d had, the satin stitches in the finished piece created almost a fur like texture. I decided to make the quilt block the focal of the piece- no time to add more satin stitches around it. I sandwiched it and quilted diagonal lines and bound it.





I’m looking forward to how I can use the Common Thread Collaboration to really stretch myself, think outside my current projects. I think September’s project definitely did that. Take a look at what Neicy did! I absolutely love it! (She also admitted to starting in an overly ambitious way, glad I wasn’t the only one!)

As always, you can follow along on our little year long collaboration over on Instagram #commonthreadcollab, where Neicy and I will post periodic peeks into the work we do each month. Satin stitch, you were lovely, but I’m ready to move one. This month is the humble Whip Stitch. I think I already have a less ambitious idea in mind.

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