As I mentioned yesterday, couching travelled the furthest. But I disqualified it on the grounds that it needed another thread to hold it down – so actually it uses twice as much thread as anything else. It travelled 12.5″. Running stitch kept going for 11.25″ (these were 15″ lengths of thread, if you remember), and this was declared the winner, with couching throwing a bit of a tantrum and demanding a stewards’ enquiry. In second place, jointly, were split stitch and coral stitch, each managing 4.75″. Limping home in last place was rope stitch, at a measly 2″.
Some notes on this interesting little exercise:
Crochet thread is very ’round’ – ie cylindrical – which makes it better for some stitches than others. A round thread is not so good for split stitches, where a flatter thread – such as stranded floss – makes it easier to split the stitch.
It’s a long time since I’ve stitched on just a single layer of cloth, having been used to quilts and layered cloths for so long. With one layer, there is nowhere to bury the ends of thread, so they are all visible on the back, and also less secure.
Some stitches (notably back stitch) end up with most of the thread on the back, which could be quite interesting to use deliberately some time – ie stitch on the ‘wrong’ side of a cloth to get a different effect. I especially like the reverse side of split back stitch.
It seems that a length of thread will do approximately one-third of its own length in a decorative stitch, which is, I hope, a useful general yardstick for estimating thread usage.
You're welcome to pick your way through threads and stitches, but I'd be really grateful if you could be kind enough to refrain from pinning.