I've been furiously stitching away on the Melissa Shirley Candy canes over the past few weeks. I have a total of 10 I want to do this year--two more from the "red"series and eight from the "green" series. I did six from the red series last year. So far I am halfway through to my goal. I've completed the two from the red series, and have done four of the green series.
I really enjoy working up these candy canes. First of all, I get to make up my own stitch guide. I always start with determining my background stitch. I surround myself with my currently favorite books. For this Gingerbread Men canvas, I selected Sandy's Slide. The cookies were tent stitch, with french knots for the buttons and cross stitches for mouth & eyes. They even have little french knots for hair--impossible to see here, I know.
For this Swirls candy cane, I couched some Flair, & did mosaic stitches for the white squares. The background on this was tent stitch. I do listen to the experts who say that every canvas needs a little tent stitch to rest your eyes.
For this Wreath candy cane, I used Alabaster for the skip tent background. The wreaths are done in Fuzzy Stuff, long & short stitches. There are beads (gold) for the balls on the wreaths. and the squares are again mosaic, in Petite Velvet. Thanks to Ruth Schmuff for this idea; I did this before on a cute little giraffe with a wreath around his neck.
This Mittens candy cane had the background that took the longest. Worked in Threadworx, the stitch is Criss-Cross Hungarian, which makes for an excellent background stitch, especially when there are polka dots. But it is a little annoying to compensate sometimes. The mittens were tent stitched, with Vineyard Silk. The leaves were a kind of leaf stitch (I say kind of, as they were not perfectly straight leaves), with a little bit of Petite red Velvet again on the cuff.
I have five more left to work up; I just put the next one on bars last night. But before I get back to it, I am working on this months' ANG SOTM. This month's stitch has been a challenge--I really don't like couching! But it is going to be a beautiful piece, I am sure.