Saturday, 22 February 2014

'Welsh Poppy' finally complete!

A mere three weeks after the needle painting part of the Needlequest finished, I finally completed my second small piece!  I had to force myself to get on with it - I don't much like doing the leaves in so many shades, but I'm glad I did and it's now finished.=)  I'm now back to my preferred two WIPs.  I don't like to have more than that as it makes me feel stressed and leads to over slow progress and/or certain things being plain neglected whilst I do the easier one(s)!

Here are full frontal and side views.

Working these two pieces was quite a steep learning curve.  Although I'd done some of this type of work before, I still felt I was learning a lot, and quite intensively too.  I'm more or less happy with the flower on this piece, except that I keep on making my first row of stitches too wide and end up leaving little room for the denser shades of the colour later on (note to remember next time!),  but the leaves - esp. the small one - leave something to be desired.  Sir said that the large one was well done and, yes, that's not too bad, but we both agreed that the small one was, well, naff!!=)  The bud comes close to suiting that title as well, esp. in this next shot where its deficiencies are highlighted!!LOL!


I've come to the conclusion that I prefer leaves to have less shading in them.  There were meant to be five shades in the large leaf.  I narrowed it down to four.  There are only four yellows in the petals and I can't help feeling a bit that, if the leaves are so super-shaded, it may detract a little from the flower.  This is something I need to think about and plan much more carefully next time.

Another aspect that needs more thought in advance is colour choice.  It was OK sorting out the petals for both my recent pieces, but greens are another pair of pyjamas altogether!  It seems that you never can have enough greens and I'm considering doing some serious research into plugging some gaps in the Anchor colour range with DMC shades.  Working out which shades are needed is going to be a real headache as I only have the Anchor colour chart and lighting in shops isn't the most helpful.  If anyone has any suggestions (I'll also post to Stitchin' Fingers and HEN about it), I'll be happy to have them.  The main problem with this one was that two of the shades of green seem to have got reversed in the book instructions and, as I was also using conversions from DMC to Anchor, I was tired and stressed by the time I'd finally fiddled out a combo that would pass muster.  Not ideal, but it'd do.  I'd already worked two sections and had to unpick them, so I wasn't out to create yet more work!!  So, shade selection needs a lot more careful work in future, and that before I start to stitch.  With days getting longer now, that will be easier to fit in.


This is kind of an odd angle to take a photo from, but I like it!  The badly done bits are played down and the light falls just on the part where contrast with the fabric is lowest and so shows it off in, literally, its best light.=)

So, yes, I'll be coming back to needle painting in the not too distant future - there are five more pieces I want to do from this book, but with extra care in colour choice and leaf working.  I'll be visiting the bricks and mortar Sew and So shop in a few week's time, so I'm saving to get the DMC shades I need then.  Hope their in-shop prices are as good as their on-line ones!  Anyone know?

So, now I need to get back to poor Hanako who has been neglected this week.  I'd like to finish the February challenge on time as there's nothing worse than always trying to catch up all the time.  The key, I think, is the same as it was when working the weekly samples for the City & Guilds level 3 course I started a few years ago - small and/or simple!  As one of the upper year students said to me, "I soon learned to keep things small."  One to bear in mind when choosing my Needlequest pieces, methinks!  What say you?

Text and images © Elizabeth Braun 2014

13 comments:

Jules said...

The final flower looks great, and it all looks pretty well balanced to me! If you also learned something while stitching, bonus!

Rachel said...

It seems pretty creditable to me. Maybe you need to lengthen the overlap between the colours, to "smear out" the shading - you might like it better then?

Glenis Pickering said...

I say it looks pretty good. We can always find fault with our own work (knowing where to look is the key!) so go-easy on yourself. :-) Remember this is supposed to be "learning" not perfection. Well done anyway!

Cynthia Gilbreth said...

Needle painting is not easy, and I think you did pretty well on this piece. It's quite hard to know how much to overlap. Actually, I like what you did with the bud.

Queeniepatch said...

I think you have done a great job on this design. It is interesting to compare the three photographs and see how differently the shading looks with the light coming from different directions.

Comparing shades of thread is very difficult. How about making a small thread chart with a few stands of thread, make and number of the thread you have. With that chart in hand you can compare the stock in the shop and get what you find you are missing.

Good luck with Hanako!

zenuwpees said...

Félicitation la fleur est magnifique Marie-Claire

Lorraine said...

Beautiful Elizabeth!

Renee said...

I think your flower turned out great!

Elaine said...

so pretty Elizabeth! beautifully shaded, well done on a great finish!

Wendy said...

it looks lovely! I've been doing the same thing with the first row of stitches on a long and short piece, I crowd them too much so it's harder to get the next shade in. I definitely need work on my colour choices...

Grove Walker said...

Your poppy is so beautiful

Favo de Mel said...

Perfeito, belíssimo bordado.

prettylittlethingsinabox said...

love the yellow hue.. is beautiful.. Congrats that is complete.. yay!

 
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