First of all, the good: I loved doing the stitching. I like following lines I've already drawn, just pulling the floss through the fabric, over and over. It's like meditation for me, and it's soothing, and it's fun because I can try to imagine what it will look like (I can't visualize things, not in any concrete way), and I can dream of other applications, other projects. The stitching on this was really nice and smooth: I hooped it and used, mostly, 6 strands of floss to do a backstitch. Easy as it gets, right? (We watched a lot of Netflix, and it went quickly, relatively speaking.)
The bad: I quickly realized that the smaller details, like that lotus in the middle of the paisley, the things that needed 3 strands of floss? Those were not going to read well at all. Let me show you what I mean. See the lotus above? Here it is stitched:
And here it is from a distance. You can't read it at all. It just looks like a snarled mess in there.
So what I had to do was to re-think all the piddly little details inside the paisleys, and I had to ignore those lines and just go with shape:
I didn't stitch the small circles around the outside; small circles are really, really tough to read (lumpy, not circle-like), and I thought I'd put a sequin and a bead instead of each one. And I thought I'd put the same sequins and beads as the outline for that center paisley, as well—the part where there's un-stitched scallop shapes. But I don't think I want sparkly on this. I don't know. I need to wash it and see if the ink is going to come out. It may not; it's permanent (although I don't heat set it, so it may).
It's also funny to see that it's placed a little wonky on the dress. This amuses me a lot. Because of the OCD, I don't count stuff and I don't measure things unless absolutely, positively necessary, so even though my anal-retentive brain wants everything to line up perfectly and be exactly centered and blah, blah, blah, it's never going to happen. Through many, many years, I've learned what works and what doesn't, what's going to set my brain off and what will sooth it. And while nice and centered looks best, it just isn't worth it. I'd be in there with a magnifying glass counting threads on each side of center, and you'd find me like that, glass gripped tightly in my hand, piles of sheets of paper with calculations of thread thickness scattered around my lifeless body. You'd notice the teeth ground down to a fine powder and the furrows of lines permanently creasing my forehead and—
Well, it's a moot point. It's not happening. If I can't eyeball it and get it right, I just have to go with it.