Thanks for the thoughts on the red cushion. The red looked 'worse' than it will be when finished as it was standing a bit proud of the stitched piece and was also quite a bit bigger than the finished item will be, so it shouldn't be too bad. I'm considering moving the side pieces out a bit before sewing them on though. Haven't done any more on it yet.
As I know some are interested in this kind of embroidery, here are the other 3 projects inside the 'Beginners' Guide to Silk Shading':
There are also 3 smaller flowers and 4 beginners things to do. She does most of her work with only one strand of cotton, (which looks a lot finer and better than with two), so I must give that a go.
NB: These are all photos from the book, not my own work! I've put them up here so those who might be interested in these books can have a closer look than on-line bookstores allow!=)