When I got the poppies finished, I already knew I was going to sew down some wool roving over the yellow to give a look of pollen when you are standing back from them. I also knew I was going to sew beads for the seed heads.
The embellishment stage is often my favorite time with a quilt. I get to hold it and cradle it and spend some time touching it in a different way than I do when it is going back and forth from the design wall to the sewing machine. I'm sitting here trying to figure out how to explain it, but I really don't know how. It's all a tactile thing. Maybe the quilters who read will understand.
I sewed the roving down on the sewing machine, then I got out all my black bugle beads. I ordered these specifically for this project. (Ornamentea also has great prices on wool roving.) I put everything out in front of me and one at a time I sewed down the beads over the centers of the poppies.
I also ordered these crystal looking beads thinking I would do something completely different than I ended up with for the ballerina. I never loved her head piece, but in studying ballerina's it was appropriate - more appropriate than her having long flowing hair and the idea giving her a bun was just yuck so, I figured I would dress it up when I got to the stage of handwork and embellishing.
A while ago, right after the beach, someone gifted me some swan feathers from a lake where they were found - it was on the property of a camp where the swan had lived a good life and died leaving behind some feathers. I felt honored to have them since I have been working with the swan. When they were given to me I thought for sure I would find a way to incorporate them into the quilt, but they are HUGE and didn't fit. Even though they were too big they still inspired me to use some feathers anyhow.
I ended up just using some feathers I had from a project the kids and I have did a year or more ago. A good quilter holds onto everything that might be useful in a craft, right? Certainly paid off this time!
I'm all done with the top. It feels a bit bittersweet. I better get busy on those new ideas I've got floating around in my head!
I'm off to quilt!