How to create a beautiful bead-embroidered rose on canvas

While it can often take me quite a bit of time to come up with a new idea for my next big project, I cannot sit still in the meantime. My hands have to keep creating something. Otherwise, I get restless.

Here is one of my “interim” projects that I created while getting ready to make the brain slices (still need to come up with a name for this work – suggestions welcome). For this project, I decided to revisit an old passion of painting flowers. It was a relatively quick project (compared to others that typically take months) with a few easy steps.

Step 1

I found a photo of rose that I liked online, printed it and cut it out. I painted a 6″ x 6″ canvas with white paint and, after it dried, used water-thinned white glue to decoupage the photo onto it. I mixed the glue and water at about 1:1 ratio.

Step 2

Using acrylic paints, I mixed red and white at about 3 different ratios to create a color gradient and painted each petal, starting with the white area and increasing intensity of red towards the edges, blending the paints as I go.

I wasn’t crazy about how the rose seemed to just be floating in the air, so I decided to improvise and added some leaves to embellish it.

Step 3

I picked out a few shades of red and pink beads that I already had lying around and a small red crystal. First, I embroidered the perimeter of each petal with bright red beads using the backstitch. Here is a good video on how to do it. I also sewed on the crystal in the middle.

Step 4

After evaluating many options, I chose 6 mm pearls and filled in the light part of each petal to give it some volume. Of course, the petal shape came out to be sort of “inside out” in the third dimension, with the deepest part of each petal sticking out, but I liked it anyway.

Step 5

Finally, I filled in each petal with seed beads using the backstitch method, gradually going through color transitions from the pearls to the dark contour. I decided to keep the leaves as they are to allow the flower to really pop.

How it turned out

As you can see, it is not all that difficult, just time consuming. While it may require a lot of patience, this sort of delicate, repetitive work can feel quite soothing and be used as a form of meditation to quiet the mind.

The rose is available in my Etsy shop!

Art is my emotional outlet and my oasis.  I use art to express my feelings and work through life issues.  Come join me on this journey of letting go of control and letting the creative process take over.  You will get access to all of the behind the scenes footage and see the major breakthroughs that translate into new artwork.

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