Temari ball – hemp leaf design, from an S4 to a 42-faced C10

January 1, 2014


Inspired by a traditional hemp leaf pattern (asanoha in Japanese) done on a S4 structure by Barb Suess in her latest book, I decided to ramp up this design to a Complex 10.

I decided to jump straight to a 42-faced C10 instead of ramping up via a series of potential intermediate steps: Simple 4 to Complex 8 to Complex 10 (12 faces). Why 42 faces? Working in either pearl cotton 5 or pearl cotton 8, I decided 42 faces was an appropriate number for the relatively small, 34.5cm circumference, ball. Perhaps with a 40cm circumference ball, I could contemplate doing 92 faces.

Mari. I started with the 34.5cm mari wrapped in a warm grey colour. Not a cool grey (battleship grey with a distinctly blue tinge), but one which tended to a redder “brown”.

Division lines. I used a pearl cotton 8 in light blue (color #799).

Here’s the S4 model in the background and one of the twelve pentagons of an ordinary C10 highlighted with white pins:


Here’s the addition of division lines for a 42-face.  After doing all this work, I discovered an easier way of adding 42-face division lines proposed by Barb Suess on the Temari Challenge Yahoo! group.


Surface stitching

Then it was a matter of adding some hemp leaf/asanoha stitching in a very dark blue pearl cotton 8. I added pearl cotton 8 off-white/beige in the center pentagon, though it’s not strictly an asanoha shape. Stitching asanoha requires some careful thought about how the pointy star points project out from the six corners. I’ve learned to stitch around the main axis and not around the two side spokes projecting away from the corner. This applies to both the pointy stars and the framing stitch around the small hexagon.


I then extended some of the dark blue beyond the first pentagon so I could stitch a border around the pentagon with two rows of pearl cotton 5 in a mid-blue, allowing for a tack in red at each corner.



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