Variegated silks are a popular choice for blackwork today.Blackwork commonly employs a variety of filling patterns worked in Holbein stitch, which looks like backstitch, but is actually reverse running stitch. The design is worked in one direction in running stitch, leaving a stitch space between each stitch. Then, the embroiderer works the design in the opposite direction, filling in the empty spaces with another running stitch.Modern blackwork is popularly used to create geometric designs, but can also be used to stitch beautiful picture embroidery. Various levels of shading can be achieved in blackwork by varying the filling stitches and patterns and the weight of the thread. Modern Blackwork is often effectively combined with counted cross stitch and surface techniques to good effect.