Hannah Breed has languished in my stitch stash for years! One of the reasons Hannah has languished in the stash is because I was afraid to start her! Fear #1 has been faced--Hannah has been started. My second fear and reason Hannah has been so long in waiting is because of the queen stitches! Darlene O'Steen in her book The Proper Stitch says this about the Queen stitch.
Queen stitch, also known as rococo stitch, though time-consuming, is one of the loveliest stitches found on works from the seventeenth century. When queen stitch is pulled, a lacy effect is achieved, creating a stitch "fit for a queen." The resulting pattern of the queen stitch is a diamond shape with center tacking stitches.
Before I tackled the queen stitches on Hannah Breed, I got out my trusty, old faithful, doodle practice piece of linen and gave the Queen stitch the old college try. The first ones looked terrible! Since Hannah was nine years old when she stitched this sampler, I was not willing to concede defeat and continued stitching. Admittedly, the more stitches I made, the better looking they became. As is the case with most needlework, I believe the secret to the Queen stitch is the correct amount of tension.
You will have to excuse me, someone is knocking at the front door, I suspect it is the needlework police calling!