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Mourning Art
Directions for Embroidery

  1. You'll be creating a family register. A family register is a list of family members that includes birth, marriage and death dates. Registers were originally drawn or painted on paper or sewn and/or painted on cloth. You must use the family of the person you are studying for your register. Create a rough draft of your project on graph paper. Keep your design as simple as possible. You might choose an icon or two for the top and/or bottom of your piece. You might add a simple border. Embroider names of the parents and their birth, death, and marriage dates. Embroider the children's names underneath with birth dates and death dates if known. Refer to the Alphabet Samples for Cross Stitch Embroidery to help with lettering.
  2. Use cross-stitch and/or backstitch.
  3. Find the center of your design and mark the center of your fabric with a single stitch.
  4. At the center points, begin stitching with a double strand of thread.
  5. Make sure that the number of stitches you make corresponds to the number of marks on your graph paper pattern. For instance, if the top of a "T" is three blocks long, use three cross stitches.


The figures below show how to work the Cross Stitch:

Bring the thread up at one corner of a square, down at the diagonally opposite corner, then repeat going in the oter direction.

Work a vertical row by forming each stitch individually. Work a horizontal row in two journeys.

One cross-stitch is worked for each marked square on the charted design. Adjacent stitches share fabric holes and all top threads should slant in the same direction.


Follow the diagram below to do the backstitch. A line of backstitching is often used as an outline of cross-stitched areas or to add details such as leaves, mouth, etc.