Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga, a professor of Africana studies, created Kwanzaa in 1965 as the first specifically African-American holiday. Kwanzaa, means first fruits of the harvest, a phrase derived from the Swahili, matunda ya kwanza.
Maria Merlino copyright 2014
Here is a small cross stitch ornament which can be quickly made for a token gift or for your own ornamentation. It proudly displays the kinara candelabra and the seven candles called the mishumaa saba in traditional colors .
14 count aida cloth, white, 6 inches by 5 inches
DMC embroidery floss one skein each : #321 Christmas red, White, #310 black, #699 Christmas Green, #3045 yellow beige dark, #801 Coffee brown dark, #307 lemon, #445 lemon light. You can substitute generic colors if you wish.
Embroidery needle size 24, it has blunt point and a large eye
To make up into an ornament, either put the completed cross stitch into a frame or back the cross stitch with an additional piece of aida. Using 4 strands of red, work a running stitch around the ornament and before completely sewing up, stuff with a little fiberfil. For hanger, braid all the colors of left over floss into a 7 inch strand and attach to top of ornament.
To download chart:
*Right Click On Image
*Click Copy Image
*Open a Blank Word Document
*Paste Image onto Document
*Re-size to full page
To begin, find the center of the graph. Then find the center of your fabric. To easily do this, fold the fabric in half vertically and horizontally. Where it makes a corner, give it a pinch. When you open up the fabric, the pinch mark will be the center. Embroidery floss is made up of 6 strands. Pull out a 36 in length and cut. Use two of these strands to thread the needle. To start the stitching, insert the needle from back to front, leaving a one inch tail. Do not make any knots, but work the stitches over the tail to fasten it down. Cross stitches are worked in two parts. First make a row of half stitches that look like this:////////. Then go back and cross them with stitches that look like this: \\\\. When finished, the stitches will look like XXXX.
Maria Merlino is an internationally recognized designer. Her patterns have been published in books, magazines, Amazon ebooks, on her own website and for Associated Content, now known as yahoo.voices. Maria is a columnist for her local weekly, The South Philadelphia Public Record, where her column, Within Walking Distance,covers businesses, food, entertainment, personalities and politics. Maria is also a writer and copy editor for Row Home Magazine, where she specializes in writing about people, places and things in South Philadelphia.