Anyway, first the peony, I had decided that I would stitch the two peonies in two different colour ways, one a solid shade and one variegated. I looked at a lot of photos of peonies to get an idea of colour but it is still difficult for me to tell how the colour of the silk will be affected when stitching onto a black background. I asked my tutor to advise on colours and after an exchange of emails she sent me the colours I was missing and I started stitching.
I put a little padding on some of the front petals on both blooms and used a random realistic technique over the top. This technique is one we learn in phase 7, check out our gallery of Japanese embroidery (www.nuido.org.uk/) for photos of the phase pieces.
Stamens have been stitched in #1 shell gold, this is a gold thread which incorporates some other colours (pinks, blues, oranges). I thought it would add a bit more shine, unfortunately it does not show up well in this photo. The pollen is a knot of very light yellow.
Second peony, worked in the same way as the first one, but in one fabulous shade of pink, a very bright fuchsia, or more accurately peony, pink.
Progress so far - the colours are a bit washed out, they are much brighter in real life :-o It is difficult to get a good colour contrast with the black background - does anyone out there have any tips for getting a good colour contrast with a black background?
Quick photos of the three handbags I've made from vintage obi - guess which one is my favourite?