About fifteen years ago I was going through one of those periods of penury that we are all subject to, so Christmas presents and birthday presents became rather a challenge – usually solved by making something, with varying degrees of success.
This coaster was made for my grandfather, based on a version of the merchant navy’s Crown And Anchor symbol. It’s worked in ordinary stranded cotton (all I had at the time) and you’ll be surprised what stitches I managed to cram into it!
I don’t imagine that Grandad noticed (he only had one eye – the other was glass – and the working eye was short-sighted), but the top curve of the crown is worked in Pekinese Stitch, worked very small and tight, while the headband is worked with the colours the other way around and slightly larger and looser. The tiny cross on the top is a composite of an ordinary cross stitch worked over a slightly larger upright cross stitch.
The more conventional stitches of course included back stitch, stem stitch, and satin stitch. The cable that is wrapped around the anchor is worked in two rows of Magic Chain Stitch, purely because (if I remember correctly!) I thought it would be fun and had been twitching to try it ever since I had seen it diagrammed. It worked pretty well in the end, as it happens.
It’s not one of my most successful pieces, but it was fun to do, and it came back to me after my grandfather died and now lives beside the spare room bed, ready for glasses of water or cups of morning tea.