One thing you need to consider when stitching for charity is that the materials shouldn’t eat up all the profits. It’s all too easy to go on a stash-buying spree to make beautiful and desirable little items, only to work out afterwards that no one is going to pay what you would need to charge to cover your costs. Buying in bulk is useful in keeping costs down, whether it’s the felt tags I ordered last week or (my latest idea) coasters, so I splashed out and got 100. I’m sure they’ll get used, if not this decade, then the next; after all, it’s not as if they’ve got a best before date!
The next question is what to put in them. Round Dozen is great for coasters, but even though the designs are relatively quick to stitch, they’re still a bit too labour-intensive when trying to get a mini production line going. So let’s see if we can’t simplify the design a bit while keeping its decorative qualities.
First we’ll do it on Hardanger fabric instead of 25ct Lugana so that a smaller design will sufficiently fill the coaster. The originals are a fairly tight fit anyway, and a bit more breathing space may not be a bad thing. Make the central part smaller, keep the coloured diamond – chain stitch, I think, as it’s a bit quicker than double cable stitch – and leaf stitch in the corners for no other reason than that I particularly like leaf stitch. In the first draft I had some coloured surface stitches snugly fitted into the corners of the central motif, but perhaps they’d look better as a coloured border, although that is a bit more work and may make the thing too big. I will have to try out both designs and see which one works best.
Ah. I’ve just realised that the border consists of double cross stitches. I like double cross stitch – it’s a quick and easy way of adding some 3D texture to a project, and it looks great in cards. Unfortunately there is only so much 3D texture that a coaster can accommodate, so back to plain old single cross stitches. And now let’s get some models stitched up!
Note to self: get some more thin black Vilene.