I love trying new crafts. I’m always so fascinating with making, well, everything and I’m forever looking for the next thing to try. I’ve even got a list that I’m planning to work my way through this year!
Today is all about bargello which might be familiar to some of you but probably not to many more – it was definitely a new discovery on my part! It’s an old traditional type of embroidery from Florence, Italy using flat stitches to create patterns, the most famous of which is probably the flame stitch. Bargello refers to both the pattern itself and the embroidery technique.
The craft had a revival in the 1960s with new interpretations of the designs and it’s even expanded into quilting with bargello quilts where strips of fabric are used to replicate the patterns.
In the last year or so, it’s come back again with modern crafters putting their own spin on things. Killer colourways and new uses for the finished pieces has made this old craft much more relevant with colourful planters, wall hangings, bags, cushions and more.
The Bargello Edit, run by the awesome Nerissa Pratt, is a U.K. based online store with all the bits and pieces needed to get you started. She offers kits and online workshops if you need an extra helping hand! I bought her hanging planter kit with the pick your own colour palettes option. The kit includes all the necessary threads, plastic backing, needle, D rings and hanging cords.
The planter is made up of 8 panels of the plastic backing which are embroidered individually and then stitched together. Long cords then tie together and knot into the D rings to create a sort of net to hold your plant pot in.
The pattern instructions the kit comes with is for the flame zigzag (though in reality you could probably just do whatever you fancied). I purposely took my time making up the kit, just doing one panel an evening whilst watching some telly. I wanted to enjoy the process!
I went with a quite a varied 70s-esque colour scheme which is retrospect was probably not the best idea. As much as I like it, it doesn’t go with the rest of my place! I’ve got no one to blame but myself though! I only used half the threads that came in the kit. I don’t know if I was just very thrifty with my usage compared to the average person. It does mean I’ve got plenty to play around with in the future though!
Ok so the hanging part of this planter is still a work in progress – I realised at the end of the project that I actually didn’t have anywhere to hang it so I’ve left the last stage of attaching the hanging cords off for now!
I really enjoyed making this and I’d love to play around with it more, though perhaps in colour schemes more suited to me! I like the even, organised nature of it all and I think it really lends itself well to a kind of meditative crafting.