Mary Corbet

writer and founder


I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Sampling Stitches – that is, Doing What I Love!


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This week I got started on a couple project samples for kids’ classes this summer. This particular stitched sample that I’m going to show you today is for middle to high school aged kids. It’s a tad complex for little kids!

Before launching into stitches and such, I better get a little business out of the way, though!

For those who have been waiting for them, there’s a limited supply of the pre-transferred towel sets available in my shop – both the Floral Corners and the Holly & Evergreen (if you want to get a jump on Christmas). Purchases made before 10:00 am central time will ship today, and all others will ship Monday.

I’ve also posted a lettering sampler design for my patrons over on Patreon. It’s a spin-off of this Quick Brown Fox lettering sampler from a while ago. I added a lazy dog and a jumping fox and a few lines to turn it into a kind of combo band-sampler-lettering-sample-dog-doodle-thing. So if you’re part of the crowd on Patreon, you can pick that design up now.

And speaking of samplers… this is what I’m working on this week:

embroidery sampler of line stitches

I love stitching stitches.

I suppose that sounds weird. After all, if we’re stitching, we’re stitching stitches. But I love stitching All Kinds of stitches!

Following on last year’s summer embroidery classes for kids, I’ve got another one lined up for this summer, and one of the projects that we’ll be doing for the middle to high school aged participants is this stitch sampler. But instead of just leaving it as a sampler, we’ll be finishing into something useful.

embroidery sampler of line stitches

Of course I’ll show you the finish on the class sample, once I get it to that point! I should have the whole project finished by the end of the weekend, if I’m a good girl.

But you know how weekends go…

embroidery sampler of line stitches

To make it very easy to manage consistent stitch lengths and spacing, I’m going to use a somewhat low-ish count linen for this project.

Even though I’m already stitching this class sample, this won’t be the fabric. This particular linen is no longer available, but I’m going to hunt down something similar. I’m looking for approximately 24-28 count in a natural colored linen, with a good fill in the weave. That is, I don’t want skinny threads that leave a very open grid. At the same time, I don’t want a thick and bulky linen. So it will take some hunting, but I’m pretty sure I can find something suitable. I’ll let you know!

The threads are regular DMC floss, because it’s a good quality floss, it’s affordable, and it’s easily available.

Needless to say, I’m having too much fun with this project. It’s tempting just to work on this and skip everything else on my To-Do List!

You can find heaps of tutorials for stitches that work well on this kind of line sampler in my Stitch Fun! series. I’m definitely going to add a few of the composite stitches from that list on this sampler. I can’t wait to get to it!

In fact… why am I still sitting here??! I’m going to go forth and stitch – right now!

Have a terrific weekend!


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(7) Comments

  1. Mary,

    I learn so much from this site. Thank you!

    And thank you for offering pre-transferred items. I am only 57 but I find that I do not have the steadiest of hands. Maybe I just need to practice more. However, these are much appreciated.

  2. I’ve been wanting to do a stitch sampler myself! This one looks great and what a terrific project for the young people! I really enjoyed (well, I enjoy all your posts actually) your posts last summer on documenting your summer kids’ classes.

  3. I love the stitches! My first thought is what colors I would do them in so that they were colored coordinated and that is nothing against your choices. I am so happy to know that at least in Kansas, kids that care can get some instructions on the finer arts!

  4. Just want to take the moment to thank you for all your great videos. They are by far, the best ones out there for learning stitches, with the easiest approach. It sounds funny, but a lot of instructions out there for stitch tutorials add un-needed steps. Yours tutorials are simple, and make sense.

    Thanks for all the encouragement too on it being cool to be a stab stitcher! 🙂
    Pat Dumas

  5. Hey Mary, did you ever share what you came up with for cloth for the stitches needle book? I’m getting started and thought this project would be a good place to get familiar with techniques.

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