I had a good friend once who seemed to be always telling me "A little humility is good for the soul". I am not sure I liked to hear that, then or now!
Nonetheless, I will show you my first attempts at Hardanger with its many mistakes. It was just on a scrap of linen so there was no room for the hoop (of course I didn't have time to add any calico!) and that did not make for nice even stitching. Many of the books say that you don't need a hoop but I am sure I would have been more comfortable using one.
I couldn't count threads properly and ended up with the most peculiar point to my original shape of kloster blocks. This wasn't what I had intended but I could have made it a design feature. However I decided to simplify the whole thing and made the groupings with the needle weaving and the Dove's eye (Spindel) (another mistake in it) and my ambitious Skraspindel or square filet filling. Also it is obvious why a new sharp pair of scissors, more suitable than the ones I own, is at the top of my Christmas wishlist (Santa has promised to oblige!).
Once again my eyes let me down and this is work (on 28 count linen) that can only be done in small bites.
I did learn! I used #5 perle for the kloster blocks and feel that they would have been much more satisfactory in #8. I will use a hoop in future and probably take the time at the beginning to mark out the fabric.
Last week after an extended library loan it was necessary to return the library books on Hardanger I had borrowed - one by Jill Carter and the other by Yvette Stanton (one amazing needleworker!).
Not sure whether I prefer Carter's book, Hardanger Embroidery , because it is the one I read first but I find her easier to follow than Stanton. I am certainly not wanting to denigrate Elegant Hardanger - it is up to her usual high standard - beautifully illustrated descriptions of all the steps . I am just expressing a personal preference. In fact, I will probably buy the Stanton book because I can't find that particular Jill Carter book at a reasonable price. I would recommend either of these books to a beginner.
It goes without saying that this is an embroidery style that I want to pursue further. Much as I would love to own a runner, I am thinking realistically I might manage maybe a coaster, or two when I polish my technique a little (or a lot).