Week 4 - Cretan Stitch
Again, one of those stitches known, but seldom used. Now after experimenting a bit with it I'm rather shocked at the fact that I have over looked this stitch for so long.
I dragged out all my reference books to see what I could find out about this stitch. One book said work from the right another said from the left. From this I conclude that you can work the stitch in either direction. Books publish during the last 5 years or so didn't really do the stitch justice, it was in those older books that I found inspiration. Both Mary Thomas and Jacqueline Enthoven covered the variations of the stitch in some detail.
In both of these books I found a reference to the fact that this stitch was used in embroidery on petticoats from Crete, hence the name. It was after a search for images that I came to the realisation of what wonders these petticoats were. Even better than a twirly skirt. Oh how delicious to have owned one of these petticoats. They would have made the wearer feel invincible.
With this in mind my application at the bottom of the sampler is inspired by a shape which appears to be a constant in this type of work. A wonderful filling stitch and not just for leaves.
What I haven't explored yet is the use of the stitch in Traditional Kutch embroidery from India. Another whole area that uses this same stitch.