This week's Stitch of the Week is the Herringbone stitch. It proved to be a little challenging to learn but the results are very much worth it.
We begin the stitch at the left side of the canvas. Because this stitch does not leave much in the way of thread on the backside of the canvas, it is best to use an "away" knot.
The first step is a compensating stitch up and to the right over two canvas intersections (just like a tent stitch but over two intersections instead of one). The next step is to come forward with your needle in the hole that is two canvas threads to the left of where you just entered the canvas.
Now we begin the pattern. Go down and to the right over four canvas intersections. Return to the surface of the canvas two threads to the left of where you just finished (i.e., in the same row of holes, two threads to the left). Go up and to the right over four canvas intersections and enter the canvas. Return to the front side of the canvas two canvas threads to the left of where you just entered.
The pattern continues across the row, advancing either up or down and to the right across four canvas intersections only to return under two canvas threads in the same row of holes. The row is ended with a small compensating stitch up and to the right over two canvas intersections. When finished with the row, end your thread by weaving it back and forth underneath the canvas threads on the backside. Cut off your away knot, re-thread your needle and end the thread in the same way.
The second row is worked in the same fashion as the first row (complete with away knot and compensating stitches). Make sure that the top stitches cross in the same direction and that the long stitches on the second row nestle underneath the long stitches of the first row.
A variation on the herringbone stitch is to use shorter stitches (slanted stitches over two canvas intersections and return stitches under one canvas thread). This variation would be better done on Penelope canvas as stitches under one thread tend not to be very stable.
Another variation on the herringbone stitch is called Herringbone Gone Wrong. This involves proceeding from left to right and then from right to left. One row of stitches will be different from the next row and the effect is very much like woven basket.
The herringbone stitch can be tedious to work but the results are spectacular.