- Pattern: by Joan Elliott
- Materials: 32 count belfast "Golden Promise" by vintage Silkweaver, DMC, Kreinik, Mill Hill as charted
- Size: 11 x 14"
- Time to stitch: 27 days
My third elemental goddess is finished!
The pattern is fine, printed in a back issue of Cross Stitch Collection magazine (#184). I have a veritable treasure trove of JE's patterns in old magazines, but I digress. Fire Goddess is a relatively simple stitch, with a decent dose of fractional stitches for her skin and other details, and quite large. 3 colors of Kreinik (two golds & ruby) are required both for cross stitch and backstitch. The backstitch is extensive, to be expected with JE's patterns. I did some as I went along; should have done more. 3 bead colors are involved; the beading took about 4 hours.
The fabric is a warm yellow/light brown, slightly mottled. Joan Elliott must be a color wizard because stitching this pattern really make me appreciate orange, for the first time ever. There is a great sense of motion in this design, like the goddess is twirling around to release her fireballs into the sky. The fireworks, in the two gold kreiniks, exploding all around her, are another dynamic feature.
Her outfit deserves a special mention, I think. Her bandeau top is so cool and she even sports belly button bling! The skirt is stitched with such lovely shading, it resembles heavy folds of silk. The overskirt/waist wrap gives the impression of wispy, transparent chiffon, as does her shawl.
I had to make one modification to the pattern; as charted her cheek ornament has a french knot in the middle. It looked muddy, perhaps because I used 32 count and there's not much space there. Even a size 15 bead seemed too crowded, so I left the backstitch and nixed the knot. Of course I modified some of the backstitch; I don't like the stairstep method for elegant lady charts. Sunburst patterns are backstitched and beaded on her skirt; that backstitch in dark gold kreinik was a painstaking process but it is very effective. I love how the symbols for Aries, Leo, and Sagittarius are backstitched in the ruby Kreinik on her shawl and slip. The zodiac symbols were really fun to stitch, maybe because I'm an Aries. Fire is my personal goddess!
There is one goddess remaining to stitch, Water, and I've already made a small start (just 100 stitches). She will be a finish goal next year!