A Nun's (Sewing) Story
Sister Maries Perfect French Knot:
French knots are classy, perfect little rosebud knots that you can embroider as part of a pattern, or all by themselves.
If you like to write things with your embroidery, the French knot will dot your is and your exclamation points!
Start by buying new cotton or silk embroidery thread; dont dig an old spool out of Grandmas sewing box. Thread and fabric are made from living things; you cant expect them to stay strong forever.
Cut a piece of the embroidery floss as long as your forearm. There are 6 strands to each floss. Separate them into 2 lengths, with 3 strands each.
This is the special part: take a piece of beeswax a tea light candle is fine and run the embroidery thread through the wax, so it leaves a fine residue. You wont even see it; it just feels ever-so-slightly tacky.
Why? Because this is the way to keep your thread from twisting and knotting up on you, the bane of every hand-stitchers existence. You can do this with any and all hand-stitching projects.
Thread a needle that has a big enough eye to accommodate your thread, and is suitable for the material youre going to be poking! You can use a big fattie for denim, but I prefer a slender needle for handkerchief linen.
Bring the thread through your fabric exactly where you want the knot to appear.
Hold the thread down with one thumb and tightly wind the floss 3 times around the needle, like winding a yo-yo. Make three wishes or say a Hail Mary! (My illustration shows 2 twists, but I prefer 3.)
If your twists are too loose, the knot will be floppy, and if theyre too tight, the knot will come out. This is where the practice comes in! Its like learning to drive a clutch; once youve got the feel, youll do them perfectly forever.
Still holding the thread, take the needle back to your starting point and pull it slowly back through the fabric close to where you brought the needle through the first time. You want each needle-prick a hair apart.
The floss will slide through the wrapped thread to make the knot. Depending on how tightly you wound your thread, thats how big your Frenchie will appear.
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