The Beginning of My Journey

Thank you all for joining me in my “Year of Exploration”.  I would like to share what I did to prepare to start my journey.  As I discussed in my last post, the first technique that I want to explore is Bargello.  I took a few evenings and searched through my Bargello books to determine which “patterns” I wanted to explore with this year.  The patterns I chose came from the following books:

  • Bargello Magic by Pauline Fischer
  • Bargello: An Explosion of Color by Margaret Boyles
  • The Margaret Boyles Bargello Workbook
  • Needlepoint Bargello by Dorothy Kaestner
  • Four-Way Bargello by Dorothy Kaestner
  • Bargello: Florentine Canvas Work by Elsa S. Williams
  • Designs for Bargello by Nikki Scheuer
  • Unique Bargello by Jean Hilton

For my exploration, I plan to follow some advice that Mary Shipp gives in her book “Design for Embroidery”, she calls it the one-three-five rule.  It is a rule she uses to balance color, types of threads and stitches.  The premise of her “rule” is to help you balance color, stitches and thread types (both of which influence texture) so that your piece is not “too busy”.  For my exploration my “one” will be number of stitch types – since I am only using the Bargello stitch.  For my “three” and “five” – I will be doing some examples where I minimize the number of colors and use a variety of thread types.  For others, I will minimize the number of thread types and use a variety of colors.

One of the things I want to explore is how use of color changes how certain Bargello patterns or motifs come out.  The other thing I want to explore is how different thread types change or effect how certain Bargello patterns or motifs appear.  Therefore, for some of my postings I will be showing photos of the same motif/pattern done in different color schemes and done using a variety of threads.

The first “pattern” I chose to do was a free Easter Egg pattern from Rainbow Gallery because I liked the Bargello type effect that had been chosen by the designer.  I am using 4 colors of Perle Cotton to complete this pattern.  Look for photos in the next few days of my progress.

I hope you will join me on this journey.  Please ask questions, share experiences – I will also take any suggestions on color schemes or thread types that you would like to see explored.  I hope you have fun with me on this journey!

Karen Anthony



2 thoughts on “The Beginning of My Journey

    • Thanks Becky! I have liked the rule since I first took Mary’s class years ago. I use it in my explorations, designs and when I adapt things. Hope you find it as helpful as I do.

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