I've always liked the monochrome look of traditional blackwork, stitched in black thread on white fabric, but have shied away from it fearing I would find it monotonous.
Sonia Lucano's book, Blackwork: Fifty Simple Embroidery Projects in Traditional Black and White, is inspiring though, with its fresh and modern take on the style – and projects of a manageable size. This and a desire to learn new embroidery styles prompted me to pick a project and find out if blackwork could hold my interest.
White Aida fabric, loosely woven
DMC six-stranded cotton thread: black (310)
Needle: embroidery, size 8
Design: Beetle by Sonia Lucano
There's no need to transfer the design on to the fabric, which is a plus. Simply start in the middle of the design and work your way outwards by following the pattern grid. I made a copy of the design from the book so I could draw crosshairs on it...
... and tacked matching crosshairs on to the fabric to make it easier to keep my place.
So that's the prep work done. Next, making a start on the embroidery.