Mary Corbet

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I learned to embroider when I was a kid, when everyone was really into cross stitch (remember the '80s?). Eventually, I migrated to surface embroidery, teaching myself with whatever I could get my hands on...read more

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Weekend Stitching: Making Adjustments on Flowers


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Happy Monday! Did you enjoy much time with your needle and thread this weekend?

As it turns out, I didn’t. I managed to squeeze in a little bit of stitching time late Sunday afternoon – and it didn’t last very long!

But I almost finished the five motifs that are featured in Elizabetta’s booklet In a Wheat Field that I reviewed a couple weeks ago.

I made some changes as I went along. I’ll show you and explain my reasoning…

Embroidered Flowers on Linen from In a Wheat Field by Elisabetta Sforza

In the hoop are the little bluebell flowers from the book. I think they’re sweet, but as I worked them, I thought of other ways I might present the same type of flowers.

I changed the colors, using the same blues I used for the cornflowers. I also changed the green, combining two colors of green for the stems and leaves.

Embroidered Flowers on Linen from In a Wheat Field by Elisabetta Sforza

The biggest change I made on any of the flowers, though, was with these white Marguerite daisies.

The white would work great on a natural colored linen, where it would stand out more. But I’m using white linen, so the white really didn’t stand out as I would have liked.

Also, the bullions (which called for two strands) were rather heavy and awkward looking in such a small space. If I were going to stick with bullion loops on that flower, I’d reduce to one strand.

But, since the white wasn’t working for me, I decided to change the flower altogether.

And what could be more appropriate when you live in Kansas, but to change it to our little native weedy “sunflowers” – which are not to be confused with the huge seed-producing sunflowers that also grow here as a crop. The sunflower I had in mind is the common sunflower, which grows wild and weedy on pretty much every roadside in Kansas during the summer.

Embroidered Flowers on Linen from In a Wheat Field by Elisabetta Sforza

Some people call these weeds of high summer black-eyed Susans, but they’re not the same flower. The black-eyed Susan belongs to the Rudbeckia family, while the common sunflower belongs to the Helianthus family. (Just in case you were wondering… practical information for your everyday life, right?)

And like I said, these flowers are everywhere around here. They are why the sunflower is our state flower.

In any case, I switched to a golden yellow for the petals, stitching one bullion (with one strand of floss) per petal, surrounded by a daisy stitch. For the center, I used a mix of brown and dark grey (one strand of each in the needle) for the French knots. I also switched greens, using a combination of two greens in the needle at once.

I wasn’t as tidy as I could have been with the center on the main flower, but overall, I was pleased with the sunfloweriness of the outcome! The whole thing just suddenly felt like home!

So those were my stitching adventures of the weekend, and it wasn’t very much, was it?

I hope your week is off to a grand start!

In a Wheat Field Availability

In a Wheat Field is available right here on Needle ‘n Thread. Grab your copy today!


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(8) Comments

  1. Dear Mary

    I’m glad you were able to get some stitching time in on the weekend and your weedy sunflowers are lovely what a good idea to change the flowers and use bullion and daisy stitch they definitely stand out. it must be so nice to have these flowers around everywhere they look delightful and how fortunate to have them as your state flower. Thanks for sharing with us your weekend stitching and for the lovely sunflowers they are so bright and delightful.

    Regards Anita Simmance

  2. I love they way you made the sunflowers, with the bullion in the center of the lazy daisy and the French knot centers. I like that you mention the families of the flowers. I pay attention to stuff like that.

  3. I love your change – even though the daisies that bloom in my neck of the woods (NW lower MI) are my absolute favorite wildflower 🙂 I love the colors you chose and the way you worked them. I might do something like that one of these days! And then do some in white 🙂


  4. Hi Mary, I really like what you’re doing! We have those sunflowers here in Utah, too, in late summer. Love them! Thank you for sharing.

  5. I remember the red poppies’ emergence in the wheat fields in Italy during the two years my father was stationed with the Italian Air Force near Rimini. As a young teenager it was just one of the deeply romantic and magical things that typified the landscape and the people. I’d seen a lot of wheat fields in the American west— none with brilliant red poppies. Only later did I realize that these were the same type poppies of Flander’s Field, the symbol of the sacrifice in WWI. No wonder the embroideries in were calling “temptation” to me. I like how you injected your version with a meaningful nod to your deep ties to the beauty of homeland. The yellow flowers have a grand way of merging Kansas with the patterns envisioned in Italia.

  6. Good Morning Mary ~ I like your changes idea and i have my own too !
    Infact I really love Elizabetta’s work so I ordered the other book too and quite a few more of your recommendations ~ I spent most of Easter on your precious site and would like to thank you for all the very valuable help you are to me.
    I have loads to learn and love every minute of it ! a very big thank you Mary !

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