Extending the Persian Fantasy – More Cacti

Cactus Extension Design 1

Cactus Extension Design 1

By this time I had run out of the fabric I used for the screen, and I was beginning to realize that if I wanted to continue to embroider in this sort of style I would need to find another suitable fabric. I’d enjoyed the Persian Fantasy so much that I didn’t want to do that…

So I designed two clusters of cacti, to use in experiments. The designs were inspired by the cacti in the Persian Fantasy, but not actually like them, and I worked them on a plain 28count linen intended for counted cross stitch.

I used chain and feather stitches, ornamental blanket stitches, and some isolated stitches as well, all to create variety and and texture. The designs themselves are very minimal, so all the interest in them lies in the combinations of the threads and the stitches.

Cactus Extension Design 2

Cactus Extension Design 2

It wasn’t easy – I wanted to use some of the ornamental stitches I had used in the original piece, but the fabric/thread combinations were very frustrating to work with. The linen threads were too closely set and rigidly finished to respond forgivingly to some of the heavier threads, but they did at least provide me with more opportunity for experimentation. Even if my conclusion had to be that I had to find another sort of fabric for this sort of embroidery!

The rocks in the second design were worked using wool as that provides a different quality of matte effect to the effect of a matte cotton.


  1. Lady Fi says:

    Great work… I love seeing how this poem is unfolding one stitch at a time!

  2. karen says:

    Hi Rachel, thanks so much for the comment. Hope you are well! Karen