A Delft Themed Sampler - My Design Process

I thought it might be interesting to show you how I create a cross stitch design, so I'm going to show you some 'behind the scenes' pictures... including rough artwork... so here goes!

This design for 'Cross Stitcher' magazine is a sampler, but one with a bit of a twist to it - it was to be in shades of blue and on the theme of Delft pottery and tiles.

So immediately I thought I'd like to combine some typical Delft imagery with traditional sampler letters and numerals.

My first job was to sketch out some rough ideas for motifs - I was thinking along the lines of windmills and sailing boats, ad even little blue and white pottery.

Plus I wanted to include some flowers, as you typically see floral motifs included on Delftware.

I also drew up a set up upper and lower case letters and some numeral, all in a traditional sampler style.

I also charted up a few little motifs for some of the smaller areas of the design, plus some possible borders and repeat patterns to use.

After I'd sorted out these elements out I tried various layouts and the favourite one I came up with is the one shown here:

As you can see, this is still quite rough! I later added colour to the motifs, once I'd decided that this was my final layout.

The alphabet is to scale in the design here, so that I can see the spaces I have left for the motifs to go in.

The sketch above shows a rough guide to the colours that I intended to use for my design, plus I'd add some white to the design as well. All that followed after tis was to create a chart of this design in my cross stitch designing software.

Below you can see the design as it looks stitched up onto the fabric. You probably have noticed that the top row of pottery has changed from my initial sketch - which shows that even when you think you've got a design worked out it can change at any time during the process!

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