The stitching on the first block has started slowly. I incorporated some of the Fly Stitch experimenting from last week's TAST stitch, and then added a butterfly in backstitch and French knots. My last thing for the week was a feather stitched vine, not yet embellished.
Part of my goal for this year is to learn more about working with pastels. Some of these colors are pastels. Some are more jewel tones. I like my embellishment to show against the background, not fade away, so this is making it very difficult for me to work in pastels. There are moments when I wonder why I ever set that goal!
I have used a combination of Sassa Lynne and DMC perles, 8 and 12, on the block so far. I like that look better than floss. I suppose I should have made "use more floss" one of my goals, too, since this project is about stretching my comfort zone - but I didn't.
For tools, I used Carole Samples' templates, Strips for Success templates, and a book called The New Anchor Book of Free-Style Embroidery Stitches is responsible for the butterfly design - except I added the French knots to decorate the wings a bit.
There's nothing here I dislike, but I did seem to take forever to decide what to use where and how to accomplish it. I know that some stitchers plan every stitch, even sketch them out before they begin. I have tried, and that doesn't work for me. I wind up changing it even if I do plan and sketch. Part of the reason is that, for me, the process is about adding a bit, standing back and contemplating what looks good with that bit, then going on to the next thing, sort of building a consensus of stitching, if that makes sense.