A C10 after Nana Akua – work in progress II

May 30, 2017

Here are some photos showing the stitching sequence of the asanoha (hemp leaf) pattern on the Complex 10 division temari ball, after Nana Akua. The beauty of stitching asanoha is that with each stitch sequence, the geometrical appearance of the pattern improves ever so slightly. This is because each sequence magically pulls against the previous stitch.

I’ve worked pearl cotton 5 on this 33cm circumference ball. I’m doing all the ‘white thread’ pattern before adding the coloured interlocked border. Doing it this way, and because of the size of the ball, I won’t be able to fit in three full triangles inside my border. At most, I’ll only be able to fit three colours of two layers each.

You’ll also notice that I’ve tacked each of the points where the division lines cross in burgundy-coloured thread. With a large ball, tacking is necessary.

When stitching with a light-coloured thread on a very dark background, care must be taken to bury the white threads judiciously, preferably under where the border will sit!

Photo 1. The inner pentagon inside the C10 pentagon divisions. The pins for the inner pentagon are two-thirds the distance along the division out from the pole.


Photo 2. The sunburst or matsuba (pine needles tied in the middle) inside each inner pentagon. Try to get each stitch in the centre of each triangle (think of the centre of a 90-degree angle from all three sides) but don’t stress – the following stitch sequence will equalise things visually!


Photo 3. This is the asanoha design proper. What you’re aiming for is three spokes inside each of the ten triangles, through careful nudging-and-fudging.


Photos 4 and 5. It is possible now to start work on the border and add more of the white thread stitching later on, burying the stitches under the border as necessary. For the purposes of this exercise however, I’ve stitched all the white thread before starting on the border. I have “extended” the previous lines of stitching by using a series of triangles and diamonds, taking care to always operate inside where the previous stitches meet. This helps enormously with providing the required tension and pleasing geometry.



I’m now ready to add an interlocked border around each of the original C10 pentagons. The corners of the border will fit inside the small diamond shapes. Space however will be limited! I will only be able to fit in three colours, from light to dark, with two layers each. See my next post for the result!


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