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Silk shading embroidery

This is my Royal School of Needlework Certificate module in basic silk shading.

When considering a subject for the silk shading botanical project, there are limits to what should be tackled as a first attempt.
I took many photos of many appealing flowers, but I was advised they were too complex.

Eventually I bought a cyclamen plant. I chose a bud, open flower and two leaves. In arranging them for photography, I took care to create a strong light source from top left. I finished the arrangement in Photoshop. Then I got two colour prints: one at actual size of stitching, and another larger one to check for details.

Silk shading is executed in long and short stitch, with a small amount of other stitches (stem stitch). I used 25 DMC stranded silks to complete the project.