Preparing the core
Measuring for guidelines
Placing the guidelines
Starting and 8 point star (kiku)
Alrighty. then! At this point, we've got the first colour in the 8 pointed kiku laid down. Time to add the next colour. I chose to use 3 colours of embroidery floss for this, but feel free to change it up.
Thread your second colour, tie a knot at the end, and pass it through the padding a couple of times to anchor it. Not that I've done this in areas that will be covered by stitching, so that any stray threads peaking through the sewing thread is covered.
Remember that to make an 8 point star, you have actually stitched 2 overlapping 4 point stars. When bringing up the new colour, you can start at any inner point that is part of the first, or underlying, 4 point star. If you look closely at the photo, you can see that the yellow strands at the point I'm bringing the needle up at run under the last round of threads.
Bring the needle with the new colour up just below the last round of stitches. The strands are fairly close together, which makes it a bit challenging to bring it up without catching it on other strands. This is where you might find yourself being downright brutal with pushing strands out of the way.
Oh, and remember that thimble recommendation? It's not necessarily, but it's a really good idea. Having the back and of a needle pushed into your finger is not very fun. It bleeds like the dickens, and getting blood out of the strands of floss is not easy.
I'm just saying.
Continue stitching in the same pattern as before, bringing the thread down and rotating slightly clockwise to the next point, placing your stitch slightly below the previous strands, then back up again to the next point near the North pin. Though it seems like you will quickly run out of space in the centre, each layer of strands pulls the previous strands in slightly, making more space.
Continue working around the overlapping stars for two rounds, in the same manner the yellow was worked. Finish your thread by passing it through the padding a couple of times, snipping away the knot and excess thread when done. Repeat on the South hemisphere.
Join with your third colour, again taking care to start at an inner point of the underlying 4 point star.
Continue working around the points as with the other colours.
When done, repeat the process on the South hemisphere.
For the next round, take up your contrasting metallic thread. As with the guidelines, I worked in silver with 3 strands on the needle.
Start the metallic thread in the same manner as the embroidery floss, starting from an inner point of an underlying 4 point star.
Work around the points as with the embroidery floss.
Working with metallic thread is very different than with the cotton floss. The strands don't always pull through as evenly, and you might find yourself dealing with what you see here fairly frequently. To fix it, you'll need to gently pull the loose strands through one at a time until they are all equally snug, then run your fingers down the strands to even them out for the entire length. Also, adjust your needle position on the strands frequently to prevent breakage at the eye.
Oh, and... cat.
I think she was cold, since she kept insisting on placing herself directly under my lamp while I worked.
Do one round of metallic thread around all 8 points of the kiku.
Repeat the process on the other side to finish.
At this point I realize I somehow managed to miss processing photos for the next step. This will be working the obi, which wraps around the equator of the temari. Off to do that, then I'll do another post.