I’ve been really interested in working on some new floral cross stitch designs. As part of my design process, one of the things that I have been working on recently is starting a new series of floral paintings and drawings. So far I’ve done one chalk pastel drawing of a white rose, and have started working on an oil painting of a yellow dahlia (I think it’s a dahlia, I’m so hopeless at knowing flower names). As I was working on the drawings I was thinking about eventually turning them into cross stitch patterns.
I did some experimentation with the white rose first. I cropped the image into a square and then imported it into my cross stitch software (MacStitch). I was purposely trying to keep the finished size quite small, I’m trying to consider the fact that a lot of people who would maybe like to start stitching probably don’t have enough time to start working on a really big piece. I’m also trying to limit the number of colours that I use in a pattern, because I think it’s silly to have a colour only be used for a few stitches. So once I imported my cropped rose drawing into MacStitch, I did some touching up of the pattern by hand. Because I was trying to get quite a small finished size, a lot of the detail got lost in the importation of the image. I put the finished floral cross stitch designs sample pattern into a post in one of my Facebook cross stitch groups and asked for some feedback. The general consensus was it was too busy and a bit hard to understand what was going on.
I realized that possibly turning my photographs into drawings and then turning the drawings into cross stitch patterns was making the details harder to read in a smaller pattern. I decided to do a bit of experimentation and directly import a digitized photograph into MacStitch. I thought it would be neat to use just about a quarter of a flower so I can maintain some level of the detail without the finished piece becoming too big. You can see in some of the photographs the pictures that I was importing into MacStitch. I pixelated one of the images just to see what it would look like, and I even tried to hand draw that pixelated image into the iPad version of MacStitch (which is called Cross Stitch to Go). Neither process was working too well, and I just ended up importing a cropped digitized version of the photograph and doing some hand alteration in MacStitch. The sample piece came out a lot better than the white rose, but I’m still not 100% happy with it. I put that sample onto my Peacock & Fig Facebook page and I got some really good feedback from it.
One of the suggestions was to do four panels with a quarter of the flower in each panel, and each panel would have slightly different colours. In that sense there would be consistency of colours across all four panels but each panel could be stitched individually and would be different than the rest. Another suggestion I got was to either use seasonal flowers or plants to make the four panels or to use seasonal colours in each of the four panels. I like both of the suggestions, and over the next little while I’m going to be doing some more experimenting and playing with design and patterns. As I keep making progress will be posting things on my Facebook page and of course I’m always happy to receive feedback and comments on my ideas.
So that’s it for now, if you have any questions or comments please let me know below!