As I’ve said before, I got this book from the 1870s for a quarter at a book sale in college.

metric system

My favorite page talks about the metric system. There’s something really nice about the quality of the paper. It’s a little bit more cloth-like than most paper you’d just run across in a 21st century book. It’s almost more like construction paper in its texture (though not nearly in thickness).

third piece in progress

Sometimes I sketch on a plain piece of paper, then scan it, flip it, print it back out and trace the sketch using red transfer paper. And other times I don’t feel like it, and I just sketch directly on the reverse side of the page that I am going to stitch. I learned the hard way the first time not to sketch on the front, that the outline will subtly show through. You have to look for it, but it’s there.

Then I poke some holes. Sometimes I do a whole line, sometimes a whole section. I’ve found that doing the outside lines first makes my life easier. But I generally don’t do holes for the french knots. Sometimes they get too big and it pulls through. Not good.

third piece in progress

I split my floss in half, so I use three strands. When stitching, the tension is important. You don’t want to pull to tight or the paper will rip. Not tight enough and the stitches are too loose. I’m extra careful when pulling through so I only take the stitch in one direction at a time. It feels a little extra-elementary, to pull the floss all the way through in one direction only, but it’s worth it.

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