Thursday, May 24, 2018

Free Block of the Month 9—Poppy

Everything is green, green, green, here! It seemed as if I (Kara) blinked, and all the trees had leaves. The orchard and fields are laden with wildflowers of all kinds—buttercups, daisies, yarrow, and so many more. On each walk with the dogs, I discover a new flower in bloom.

With so many flowers to choose from, it was a bit difficult to decide on this month's block; however, when I saw this patch of poppies the other day, I knew that they would win the monthly flower contest.

Such a vivid red!

Cotton Block 

Our guild had a yard sale the other night, and one of our members was selling her silk collection. Of course, I had to help her out by buying a few pieces. She had a beautiful red silk that was perfect for a poppy. 

Poppy bud out of green cotton
Appliquéd and ready for embroidery.

Doing the black pistils around the center seed head in turkey work, was a no brainer as that stitch with black wool or alpaca,  would be perfect. You can watch a great video tutorial on that stitch here.

I drew a small circle in the center. 
Turkey work loops done around the drawn circle.

Loops clipped and ready for a trim
I trimmed carefully and separated the strands to fluff them.

I knew I wanted the seed pod in the center to be dimensional, so I created a stuffed seed pod with a few stitches, some gathers, and a little poly-fill.

I cut a small 2" square of green fabric and used a slightly smaller than 1" circle to trace around the outside and inside of the circle. (I used Karen Kay Buckley's perfect circles.)

I used pencil for the outside circle and white for the inside circle.

Using the inner circle as your guide, make 6 straight stitches, forming a star shape as shown.

Trim excess fabric around circle.

With strong thread take running stitches around the outside edge of the circle to gather. 

Add a small amount of poly-fill before gathering, and then pull stitches tightly. 

Take a few stitches through the gathers to secure them. 

Knot off your thread but leave your needle threaded.

Attach the seed pod to the poppy by taking the needle through to the back.

Take 2-3 stitches to secure, making sure to catch the fabric of the seed pod with your stitches.

Using two strands of light green floss, make a series of straight stitches on the poppy bud as shown.

Finished cotton block poppy

Stitches and Threads Used (Cotton Block)

Stem—Painter's Threads, 4mm silk ribbon, Cezanne: stem stitch
Pistils—Black, alpaca, sock-weight yarn: turkey work
Seed pod and bud—Weeks Dye Works, Dried Sage, 2 strands: straight stitches

Wool Block

The wool block was put together the same way, although I used a chain stitch with perle cotton for the stem, instead of a stem stitch with silk ribbon. 

I love this bright, hand-dyed, wool from DKW.
Chain stitched stem with #8 perle cotton.

Finished block

Stitches and Threads Used (Wool Block)

Stem—#8 perle cotton, variegated green: chain stitch
Pistils—Black, alpaca, sock-weight yarn: turkey work
Seed pod—Weeks Dye Works, Dried Sage, 2 strands: straight stitches
Bud—Gentle Arts Simply Wool, Dried Thyme: straight stitches

Poppies are so cheerful, and this block goes together quickly. Hopefully you will enjoy stitching this little bit of brightness and will add it to your flora and fauna collection. Only three more blocks to go in our series. If you have stitched any of the blocks, we would love to see them!

You can download the Poppy block HERE

To see the other blocks in our Stitch-Along:
Quince Blossom


  1. Beautiful! And just in time for Memorial Day :)

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you said something because I hadn't made that connection, although I should have.