Basketweave tapestry stitch on canvas

Basketweave tapestry stitch on canvas

- Categories : Embroidery

How to sew basketweave stitch on canvas

Threads for basketweave tapestry

You can use Laine Saint-Pierre for a lovely matt result, as with traditional tapestry wools.
But you can also use our cotton Retors du Nord embroidery thread for a slightly shiny aspect, which adds another dimension.
Nothing is stopping you mixing different threads in a same project to obtain contrasting results.
In vintage tapestries, the faces and hands of people, and often the eyes of animals were often sewn with silk threads,
to give a distinctive effect against the woollen parts and bring out details.
You can even add a strand of metallized thread with the Laine Saint-Pierre or Retors du Nord for a great sparkly effect.
On a 7 count/cm canvas you will use all four strands, as is the case for our floral tapestry kits and multicoloured squares tapestry kits.
On a 5.2 count/cm canvas , you will use six strands, as in our tapestry kits imitating vintage cement tiles.
See all our tapestry kits.

Needles for basketweave tapestry

You should use a round-tipped needle with a large eye.
See all our tapestry needles.
If you wish, you can also use an embroidery hoop.
As the canvas is pretty stiff, this is not compulsory. This is entirely a personal preference.
See all our embroidery hoops.

The basic principle of basketweave stitch

Basketweave stitch is used on canvas for its solidity. In the past, the main use for tapestry was to cover armchairs, seats and stools.
It is customary to say that there is more wool on the back than on the front.
We strongly recommend that wherever possible, you sew everything possible on the diagonal, especially around the edges.
By stitching on the diagonal, a sort of weave will form on the back, which is why it is known as basketweave stitch.
This weave maintains the canvas strongly in place, both horizontally and vertically, avoiding the risk of the finished tapestry deforming.
The other advantage of this methos is to obtain maximum coverage of the canvas, giving a result that is both regular and more aesthetically pleasing.
If you hold the finished piece up to the light, there will be no gaps.

Starting a basketweave project

Start at the top right and stitch from top to bottom, then bottom to top and so on.
Don’t make a knot at the end of the thread.
Pass your needle through the front to the back of the canvas and hold the end of the thread in place with your thumb.
The thread will disappear under the stitches you will sew, and if need be, you can cut of the surplus.
See our video which shows the basics of diagonal embroidery.
You can click on the pictures to enlarge them.
The different steps of petit point tapestry
The first stitch,
then, the first line down,
then, the second line up,
then, the third line down,
then, the fourth line up, etc.
Of course you cannot use this method for isolated stitches or forming whole colour blocks.
Try however to use this method as often as possible.
For example, if you have two rows of side-by-side stitches, proceed as follows:
 Petit point needlwork in rows of two
Here is another example of a diagonal for a motif:  
How to make the stitches in a petit point tapestry pattern
After stitch n°60, two solutions: if you have already stitched other motifs around it, pass the wool through the stitches on the back.
Otherwise, finish your length under the stitches you have just done, and then start up from stitch 61 and following.

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