Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Project #9: Blackwork Bookmark

Many moons ago I cross stitched a beautiful Celtic knotwork bookmark for Mrblocko. It had hand dyed variegated silk and metallic threads and everything. Then, sometime this winter the big lug went and lost it. I told him that he was fired and that I was never ever EVER going to make him a new one.

Well I'm just a sucker cause clearly I've gone and made him another bookmark. He's been moaning and lamenting about not having a bookmark. He's even gone so far as to not use any bookmark to make his point about wanting another bookmark. He promised to try to try not to lose it if I was so kind enough to make him another one. Then he said he was going to keep asking for a new bookmark at every gift giving occasion until I made him one. So yeah, I guess you could say I made him this bookmark just to get him to shut up about it.This bookmark isn't nearly as fancy or labor intensive as the one Mrblocko lost. I figure he has to prove he's not going to lose this one before I spend weeks stitching something fancy. This bookmark is done in a stitch that is called blackwork. It's basically a straight stitch outline sort of embroidery. Blackwork is a lot quicker to sew per inch than cross stitch. At least it is for me.

I stitched this up mostly at my best friend, MrsThunder's house, in attempts to be sneaky and surprise Mrblocko for Father's Day. MrsThunder gasped when she saw that I was using 14 count Aida fabric to stitch on. (The count means how many stitches there are per inch. So 14 count means 14 stitches in an inch.) I believe her actual words were, "You can actually see the holes in the fabric!!"

Normally I use a much finer fabric like linen in 28 or 32 count. Linen in a fine count is much more expensive than aida. I didn't want to waste good fabric if it was going wind up mysteriously misplaced. Blackwork looks decent on a lower count fabric compared to cross stitch. If you sew cross stitch on the lower count fabrics the designs start to look more and more pixelated. I am not a fan of the pixelated look.

I used two different shades of green DMC thread. The design would have looked cool in an ombre or variegated thread of some sort but those threads are $$. I might have used them if I already had a color I liked left over from another project. Going to buy fancy thread involves going to a specialty store, and the closest one of those is over an hour away. It's also not the type of place I'd bring Blockette too. Too easy for her to get into too many different kinds of mischief. Yeah, I could have bought some on line, but I hate doing that for thread. You never know if the color on your computer is calibrated correctly. So plain Jane thread it was.

I found this design online as a freebie from a company called Stitchin'spiration. The pattern is called "Pocket garden of 4 leaf clover." You can click here for the chart if you like the design.

So Mrblocko, now you know the horrible truth about your Father's Day Bookmark. You'd still better not loose it!!! (Plbbbt.)


  1. Hi
    How do I get the pattern you say is for free I'd Looovvee to do it

  2. Hi
    I love Black work Book Marks and love to sew them . Any patterns for Free please give to me!

    1. If you look at the post there is a hyperlink on the word "Here" in the sentence that says "You can click here for a chart if you like the design" When you get to that page, click on the picture of the chart. It will bring up a pdf of the chart.

      Happy Stitching!

  3. Do you know if this pattern is still available? The link is bad and I can't find it through searching.


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