Black Passion Cross Update

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Black Passion Cross Update

Sunday afternoons are meant for relaxing, resting from the week’s labors, and enjoying a little time working on Ecclesiastical Sewing projects.  This past weekend, that special time included some hand embroidery on the Black Passion Cross for the Chalice Veil to be used this coming Ash Wednesday evening.

Black Soie Ovale stitched over padded surface
Black Soie Ovale stitched over a padded surface

The stitching on this hand embroidery project is not overly difficult.  This would make a great beginner’s project with a few modifications, such as using floss padding, and a single strand of embroidery floss for the laid stitching.

Challenges of Stitching

This project uses felt for the padding with Au Ver A Soie – Soie Ovale as the floss. The Soie OVal is Flat silk with a very high sheen. It is a nice floss, but it does present a few challenges. The biggest challenge is in managing the flat silk so that it looks smooth and even when stitched over a padded surface. Since the project is framed in a 7″ round hoop, it is difficult to hold the frame, stitch, and tame the flat silk with a laying tool.  The round frame at 7 1/2″  is too tiny to balance on the edge of my working surface to allow both hands to be free.  What to do? There must be some way of clamping the hoop to something to allow both hands to be free.

Handmade needlework stand from Just a Thought
Handmade needlework stand from Just a Thought


The solution was sitting across the room.  Why not use the new needlework stand that arrived a few weeks back?  I learned about the Just a Thought Needlework Frame from Mary Corbet over at Needle ‘n Thread.  Mary posted a great review on this frame, and at the time, the introductory price was within the budget. So, I ordered.  I have to admit, in the rush of the holiday season, I completely forgot about the order. Then, about 2 weeks ago, a large package arrived.  It was marked fragile, DISPLAY GLASS. The package addressed to me left me momentarily unable to think of what it might be.

The package was wrapped, padded, and well cared for in the shipping.  And what a delight when everything was removed and the treasure revealed! This was a beautiful needlework frame. The finish is like a piece of fine furniture. Assembly was a breeze, and in no time, the frame was set up and ready for use.

Using Just a Thought Needlework Frame for Small Items
Using Just a Thought Needlework Frame for Small Items

Needlework Frame

This is a great frame. The base is solid, the arms are stout, the frame stays in place, maintains balance well, provides comfortable height, and presents a lovely appearance. The stained finish is lovely, and the wood is perfectly smooth, with nothing that would ever snag a delicate thread. It makes one happy with the thought of placing an embroidery project on the stand, and anxious to get on with stitching.  To learn more about the frame, head over to Just a Thought. The needlework stand intends to accommodate a variety of frame sizes.

With the aid of a few clamps, it worked better than expected for this tiny project. Both hands were free to aid with stitching the flat silk. To protect the lovely wood and finish on the frame, a small piece of fabric was wrapped over the edge of the hoop before applying the clamp.

Black Passion Cross with Flat silk stitching completed
Black Passion Cross with Flat silk stitching completed

The project moved along swiftly, once both hands were free to lay the silk floss.  In a few short hours, the black stitching was complete. Up next, adding the gold threads.

Be sure to visit some of our related articles about crosses including Symbolism in the Church: The Cross.

Solo Dei Gloria

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