Inventive Needlework, by Shay Pendray, was designed with the needlepointer in mind. All of the examples are painted canvasses, and the techniques are described for working on painted canvas.
While I adore painted canvasses, and dream of sitting down and stitching one –I’ve even bought several — they are usually the last thing I choose to work on. Frankly, they are one of those projects that I want to enjoy the finished product, rather than the journey to get there.
One day this book may change my behavior. In the meantime, the way she challenges you to look at designs in a different way has changed my approach to most of my work. Shay Pendray encourages her reader to think outside the box of tent/basketweave stitch for canvasses – or even beyond the counted stitches in general. She utilizes crewelwork, long and short stitch shading techniques, metal thread embroidery, and even some stumpwork techniques to take the painted canvas beyond pillow or rug and will into the area of Art.
Even if your favorite technique is cross stitch, you could use some of these techniques over the top of your work. It’s expanded my vision into integrating more and more different techniques together. Sometimes simple is better. Other times getting extravagant can be really really cool!