A while back I found these Victoria Sampler kits online and bought the first two to start with. I bought mine from SewandSo of course, but the site linked to has more info on them. I planned to maybe do all sixty of them if I liked the first two. Yes, I did say sixty. They’re only small, about 3 inches square. Each one teaches a new stitch or technique. The idea is to do them in order as later ones will use some of the stitches taught in the earlier ones. The early ones are quite simple but later on you learn Blackwork and Hardanger, which I’m quite keen to have a go at once I work my way up to it.
Quite a few are going to be Christmas themed and can be used to make cards or ornaments plus they give other suggestions for their use. Several are themed to other occasions and plenty of them are floral or just pretty. Of course, they’ve been sitting in my cupboard waiting patiently for me to get around to paying them some attention but on Friday night I found a spare hour to start the first one and it got worked on Saturday and finished off on Sunday morning. So, why firsts? Well, apart from being my first Victoria Sampler kit, it contains several items that I hadn’t used before, on top of the new stitch.
1. Kreinik #4 braid in metallic gold
Wow, this stuff is gorgeous. I’ve used DMC metallics before but this is so much more co-operative to stitch with. It’s like sewing with liquid metal. It catches the light so beautifully too. As you tilt it you see reds, blues and blacks in it. Gorgeous!
2. DMC #8 Perle cotton
This is thicker than the thread normally used for cross stitch and had a lovely sheen to it. I rather liked it. It was used for the Holly berries and the big red Rice stitches.
3. Caron Wildflowers
There were two colours of this in the kit. One was green overdyed with a very subtle variegation, used for the leaves and the Rice stitches. The other was red/green with a very obvious variegation used for the checkerboard bands. It was quite fluffy and again I rather liked using it. It was a nice contrast to the DMC in the Rice stitches.
4. Rice stitch
The object of the exercise was to learn to do this stitch. It’s the one in the green border and the green corners, and also the red corners, although as the red corners are done just in one thread you can’t really tell that it’s Rice stitch and not normal Cross stitch unless you look really closely. It’s done by doing one large cross and then using another thread, in the case of the green ones, to do smaller legs over them. I think it looks very effective.
I enjoyed stitching this and thought the kit contents and instructions were excellent. I’m looking forward to doing the next one and if that’s as good, I’ll definitely be getting more. I’m not quite sure how I’ll be displaying them yet but I have a vague idea about putting them all in a mini book to make a library of stitches. We’ll see.