Stitching the Christmas Angel

Stripy Cape

Stripy Cape

Rather than being stitched in time for Christmas, I found myself stitching the Christmas Angel over Christmas. About halfway through the stitching, I also coloured in the hair with brown pen. It helps keep the head distinct from the background and the wings, and somehow pulled the whole thing into focus.

My invented bargello pattern of various pearl cottons, including some with a metallic twist in them, has turned out fairly well, if redder than I expected.

Shoulder Cape

Shoulder Cape

As a result, I chose to stitch the shoulder cape in greens. There are two variants here – green with a gold thread and green with a bright green thread. I’ve been using the green and gold as the striped “framework” for the Cape, so I simply used the green and green for the spots. The shoulder cape will be outlined to allow for a bit more shaping, using couched gold thread, but that’s one of the last elements of the design.

Decisions regarding the Wings

Decisions regarding the Wings

The next challenge was to decide how to work the wings. I started off wanting to create some sort of strong patterning, just with the stitches, but in the end I realised that, as the background is going to be strongly patterned, and the cape is so striking, the eye will need somewhere to rest.

So, plain brick stitch it is, although in another of those glitter-twisted pearl cottons, which are quite ridiculously tender and tricksy to stitch with, at least on this canvas. Even Gilt Sylke Twist and Gold Wyre seem robust by comparison!


  1. Lady Fi says:

    Another masterpiece in progress!

  2. Looking good, and will be all done and waiting to be enjoyed by Christmas this year. Will she be framed? I often find myself doing Christmas decoration projects over Christmas too, during the peaceful time when all the decorations are up and I’m generally just feeling happy.

  3. Penny Baugh says:

    Quite a festive angel. As always your stitching is beautiful!

  4. jenclair says:

    Lovely. I really like the stripey cape.

  5. Sue Jones says:

    Your angel won’t catch cold in that cape – it looks warm and cosy. Better than hanging around in just a nightie in December!

  6. She’s looking very good indeed – I always enjoy your explanations of what stitch you use and why.

  7. Kim McCool says:

    She’s looking beautiful!! Love all the different stitches – and the beads.

  8. Cynthia says:

    She is gorgeous! I love the stripy cape and the plain wings. I’m looking forward to the background.

  9. Terrie says:

    So delicate works as always.

  10. Carolyn says:

    That looks really good. A warm angel who will sing wonderfully come Xmas.

  11. Anita says:

    Another amazing work.. Yes, I agree with you about leaving an element of the design simple and you’ve nailed it by choosing the brick stitch .

  12. Susan says:

    I see a certain resemblance between you and your mother. =) This looks beautiful, if somewhat more complicated than I’m likely to ever be ready to try! I love stopping by to see what you are doing. I’m always impressed. =)

  13. karen says:

    the detail in the final image is beautiful Rachel….