Rainbow squares – green

The last of the squares I’ve done as part of an Embroiderers’ Guild group project, and I think my favourite. This time, the outline is chain stitch in Gutermann gold metallic thread (the sort that comes on a reel, like sewing thread, and is horrible to work with), and the filling-in is split stitch.

I like split stitch a lot and I use it quite a bit. It can give lovely textured, shaded effect, and as the stitches tend to be small, is good for small, fiddly shapes like these, where long and short stitch wouldn’t work so well. Having said that, I tend to use it for larger, simple shapes too where long and short would be perfectly fine, just because I like it. And because I have a tendency to create work for myself, but never mind that.
The triple hares design is a traditional one, used across Asia and Europe – I did a project on this motif a few years ago, when I was doing City & Guilds. It first appears in Buddhist wall paintings in China, then moved along the Silk Road, arriving in Western Europe in the Middle Ages, where it was used on roof bosses and windows and the like in churches. More recently, the hare has become an important emblem in modern Paganism, and this ancient design is having a new lease of life!

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