I’ve been moving right along on this piece. I really haven’t worked on anything else as I know the teacher really would like feedback on it to know if there were any areas she needed to fix so I’ve made it a priority for me to complete. Provided I get the time to work on it tonite I think I may have it finished as there are 4 more blackwork bands and 3 small thin ones that I know will stitch in a few minutes. Thanks for all your comments on this one, I really am having a great time stitching it. If you are thinking about trying blackwork I suggest whatever pattern you choose, open it up and see how its charted. This one, and most of the bigger designs have each area laid out on a graph with numbers for each stitch to show you the direction to go to get the desired reversibility, not all the designers will do this and if you’ve never done it before it makes learning the technique much easier.
Here is the most recent back photo. Not all of the bands are reversible as you can see, only the ones that can be done in the double running stitch are. Line 5, just above the row that looks like the letter “s” laid in its side is actually reversible cross stitch which I thought was very cool. That was not used on the alphabet however as there was too much jumping around to form the letters for it to work.
No I don’t honestly know why blackwork is reversible. I would guess it has to do with it being used to decorate cuffs and collars on clothing during the reign of King Henry VIII but now having typed that I’m sure someone will correct me. Not all of it is reversible, there are many designs and techniques to it that are not reversible. This particular sampler just happens to use primarily reversible work by design. There is an article about it on the ANG Website
that explains it better than I could and has some examples of different styles.