How To: Big Hand-stitched element | Roots & Branches

Hey everyone! I'm here to share a really cool tutorial today about a fun technique: hand stitching a big element! This is great for adding interest to a background (like I did for this project), but I think it would also be awesome to do the same thing to cut out and use as an awesome handmade embellishment. It takes a little time, but the effect is just stunning. Let's get started!

So the first thing I did for my layout was a bit of stamping with a border stamp from Paper Smooches. It adds a little texture to the background, but honestly I just really wanted to open up the brand new set of stamps I got and put them to use, hehe ;)

Then I sketched a big element - I used an ampersand, because it fits in with my title (Roots & Branches), but you can really choose any shape you want that isn't too intricate. Then I poked holes along the outlines about a centimeter apart - you don't have to be super accurate, because it will still look amazing!

The next step isn't too hard, but definitely takes time. Plop yourself in front of some nice scrapbooking process videos, or your favorite TV show until you come up with something like this:

So all I did here was go over the whole background of the shape with a simple backstitch. After that was done, I went back through random holes to make criss crosses inside the shape. This gives it such an interesting texture and dimension on the page! And notice how I left some gaps? Well, I already knew where I was going to put my photos, which were going to cover up a big part of the stitching. Since it is so time consuming, I didn't want to put too much work into a part that I knew would be covered up.

After that was done, I applied my title by cutting it out of cardstock on my Silhouette Cameo, and then using the negative as a stencil. I mixed some gesso with paint until I came up with a color I liked, and it looked like this:

You can see I also added a spritz of yellow spray mist to give a little home in the background for a die cut butterfly. I did this in three places on the layout.

After adding a bunch of stickers and die cuts, I finished my layout!

I mixed some spray mist with water to make those droplets across the page. I might have gotten carried away in some places, ha!

I love how these die cut butterflies look against the yellow mist. It really makes them stand out, since the background is white.

Thanks for stopping by today! I hope you give hand stitching a try on your next projects, because you really get some amazing effects with it!!