When I first started designing patterns, I was totally focused on creating quilt patterns using variegated threads. I did lots and lots of them over the years.
Then I decided to venture down another path and into the garden. I've always drawn flowers, mostly in colored pencils. When I decided to start stitching flowers, I wanted to replicate the flowers as best I could with thread, instead of pencils. I decided to stitch on 24 ct. Congress Cloth, with DMC floss.
Here are a few of the flowers I stitched:
The challenge I gave myself was to try and capture the essence of each flower, using thread colors and stitch patterns. It was tricky finding very small patterns that would work in the petal areas, yet not detract from the overall look of the flowers. In many cases, I would use the same stitch, but change the direction in each petal to create movement, as well as change the light effect on the overall piece. You can see how I did it on the pansies below:
I look back and think, "How did I stitch all those flowers?!?" but when you're passionate about what you're doing, you don't think of it as work, just as a stitching challenge.... Yes, it was tedious, but in the end, the finished effect was well worth it.