Well things are going quite well with the iris stream, I've completed the main iris and some of the leaves.
The iris' are worked with a mix of twisted and flat silk. The long centre petals use flat silk but I've only padded the centre one. Not sure if perhaps I should also have padded the one on the right, hmm.
On the box chart that comes with most of the designs from JEC we get details on the techniques to use for each section, what thickness of thread or padding to use, and a few other details. What I'm finding with these more advanced designs is that the instructions are not so detailed, which is the point I suppose, as we advance we are supposed to work things out for ourselves.
The late Master Saito wrote about stitching from the heart not just with the hands, and also about getting the sense of a flower rather than an exact representation. "The hands are the exit of the spirit." So despite being a bit unsure about where I'd put the padding on this iris I decided to trust my instincts and stitch what I felt. Looking at it now I think I've done the right thing, I can see this iris in my garden, well not now as it's too cold and wet but as I remember it from the summer.