I've been itching to share this for a while now, so here is the queen of all cushions in my house! I'm going to post a few pics in the order I stitched this wonderful project, so that you can see how I avoided making a buncha counting mistakes and needless frogging, and how I let other mistakes go and learned to love them.
First, I stitched the diamonds. I started at the upper left corner of the design and worked the diamonds one at a time:
For me, it was super important to check each diamond as I went, to make sure everything lined up as I stitched. It was helpful for me to count the little gold motifs on each side of the diamond, and then to make sure that the points of each diamond met where they were supposed to. This part was quite meditative, and it seemed to me that I was setting the stage for the colors and the "fun part" to commence. I realize that brown and gold are colors, but I take delight in colors that are bright and happy. The diamond lattice seems to provide a groundwork for the pretty flowers. A word of advice - the diamond lattice framework is not where you want any counting mistakes.
Also, this was the first time I worked with the Mikini cloth and IT'S LIKE BUTTAH. So soft and lovely to work with!
After the entire diamond framework was in place, I started stitching the beautiful floral motifs in each diamond. This was good for me to do it this way so that I was sure the entire design lined up properly before filling it in. I will admit to a bit of stress while I fussed over whether the lower right corner would line up properly, which it did. I think I celebrated with a shot of Fireball and a "woo hoo" when that part came together.
For this stage of stitching, I only stitched the central floral motifs. I was super anxious to get the colors in place and they were SO pretty. It may appear that this part involved a lot of counting, but it really didn't take much. After the first motif was in place, I could simply look at what I had just stitched and copy that in the next diamond, By the time I got the first couple down, I had pretty much memorized the design. I say "pretty much" because I did make a counting error here that became a "design feature." If you look carefully at the outermost blue centers of the two motifs above, you'll notice that there's a difference between the red flower and the blue one. Rather than removing all of that stitching, I elected to make the same error on purpose on every other floral motif. So, after the first one, it was intentional, which made me feel better about it.
After all of the floral motifs were in place, I did notice another couple of counting errors in several of the petals. I'm looking at YOU, blue flowers. Rather than doing damage to the work, I elected to retain the oddball petals as a "design feature" and told myself they're charming. The quality of the stitching was pretty good, so if you can find the design feature petals, good for you!
After stitching the central floral motifs, I went back and stitched the little filler motifs around each one. That part was quite meditative and went fairly quickly. Plus, it was fun to admire all of the pretty colors I had just laid down.
And that's my stitching story for the wonderful new Avlea design! You can see the finished cushion in Krista's shop. I must say, I totally want that fabulous blue velvet chair she found to go with all of her fancy embroideries. In any case, I absolutely love my cushion. I think I can live with it happily for the rest of my life. I'm dreaming of a pile of heirloom cushions on my bed, Greek-style! I've already ordered the Nisyros Leaves kit.
Go forth and make fabulous cushions! This design was a joy to stitch.