StarFlower 2 – More fun with Paint+Stitch+Bead

StarFlower 2 Cover image

When I was creating the design for StarFlower 2 in my Silhouette design software, I decided it was time to try painting the negative space around the design elements. I had no idea how this Paint+Stitch+Bead adventure would turn out, but I’m very happy with the results.

Ready, Set, Paint

StarFlower2 two-part stencil

As with StarFlower 1, I started with a two-part Renegade Stencil. My Silhouette Cameo can only cut 12″ wide vinyl –– but that 12″ vinyl can be up to 10 feet long! With some fancy editing and imagination, I have learned to cut some sizable stencils without having a bigger machine.

StarFlower2-stencil not removed
Paint with Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks

The painting on this project was simple. I chose an Iridescent Sapphire Blue Paintstik and painted the entire image in one color. As I mentioned up front, this project was an experiment in painting the negative space rather than the shapes.

StarFlower2-painted fabric
Painted “negative” image

The painted image looked pretty quiet compared to my past pieces. I knew I would have to be more adventurous with the stitching.

As I browsed through my embroidery library, I pulled up Mary Corbet’s Lattice Jumble eBook. With all the negative space in this design, this was a great opportunity to learn about Lattice work.

Stitching Time

Simple lattice work framed with a heavy outline.

For the first design element, I chose the simplest form of Lattice work, one set of crisscrossed threads secured with tiny strait stitches at the intersection points.

StarFlower2-detail 2 with threads
Triple chain band (and a record of colors used)

I worked a triple chain band around the next set of design elements, using three colors of WonderFil perle cotton.

By the way, it’s helpful to keep careful notes and/or take a series of photos as you work. As I wrote this post, I realized I recorded all of my thread choices, but NOT the stitches themselves… oops!

Whipped chain stitch bands

To make things more interesting, I laced the chain stitches together with a variegated thread. (You can read more about that in this blog post.)

StarFlower2-stitching complete
Battlement couching and other assorted stitches.

Continuing out from the center, I filled in the large shapes with Battlement Couching. That’s 4 layers of crisscrossed threads all held down with the little yellow straight stitches. Needless to say, I discovered that Battlement Couching is Very Intense Stitching! Yikes!

I used some of my favorite stitches for the remaining shapes, including Palestrina Knots and Portuguese Knotted Stem Stitch.

Don’t forget the bling!

StarFlower2-with beads
Seed beads added to center and lattice work.

Of course, I couldn’t stop there. I just had to add some bling! I added size 8 seed beads to the center circle and to the lattice work petals in the middle of the design.

StarFlower2-finished work
StarFlower 2, ready for framing.

StarFlower 2 is a great addition to this series, and another wonderful Paint+Stitch+Bead adventure.

Got a comment? Chime in below!

Learn more

Want to learn more? We’ve got eBooks just for you.

Stenciling on Fabric with Renegade Stencils and Shiva Artist’s Paintstiks is a step-by-step guide to adding images to fabric with sticky-back vinyl stencils.



Five Fabulous Beaded Embroidery Stitches is a great introduction to this novel technique of adding beads AFTER the stitching is complete! Three parts inspiration and a dash of how-to instructions will get you started.


  1. Laura Murray on December 16, 2019 at 2:53 pm

    How lovely to see that you are returning to us after your hiatus, bringing your gorgeous art to brighten up the winter days!

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 7:51 pm

      Gracias, amiga! It’s good to feel rested and refreshed after the long slog though our move. I’m delighted to be moving out of “incognito” mode. 😉

  2. Katy on December 16, 2019 at 2:55 pm

    Hi Shelly,
    I really enjoy your “how to” lessons and the use of unfamiliar to me techniques and materials.

    I know first-hand that a regular column can quickly get from pleasure to chore, so once-in-awhile is fine with me

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 7:53 pm

      Thanks, Katy. I appreciate your encouragement.

  3. Leanne on December 16, 2019 at 2:59 pm

    Very pretty! Good luck in your journey! Been wondering how you’re doing. Say ‘hi’ to Jack for me.

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 7:54 pm

      So nice to hear from you, Leanne. I will definitely give your greetings to Mr. Jack. I hope all is well for your family.

  4. Jenny Harvey on December 16, 2019 at 3:11 pm

    Hi Shelly, what a wonderful and happy surprise to see your catchup mail and the beautiful work that you have done on the Starflower 2. I hope you are well and a Merry Christmas to you an your family. With love Jenny xxx

  5. Judy on December 16, 2019 at 3:41 pm

    The star flower is truly lovely. Your work is always inspiring. I look forward to your future posts.

  6. Patricia McConnell on December 16, 2019 at 3:44 pm

    Your StarFlower is gorgeous. Great hearing from you.
    Sending warm wishes for your sister’s continued recovery.

  7. Robbie Payne on December 16, 2019 at 3:48 pm

    What a wonderful piece!!!!! Really fantastic!!! Workmanship is awesome!

  8. Dusty Huxford on December 16, 2019 at 4:03 pm

    What a bright spot in my day to see you back. Hurray!!! Your Star Flower 2 is beautiful and so creative. Thank you for sharing your wonderful talent with all of us. Also glad to hear your sister is doing well.

  9. Linda Wyszynski on December 16, 2019 at 4:07 pm

    This piece is lovely. The colors are beautiful and complement each other. Stitching is outstanding. Thank you for sharing it with all of us.

  10. Wendy on December 16, 2019 at 5:00 pm

    Thank you for your post. It is inspiring to see your work again and what you have been working on. Best Wishes as you change things and for the New Year.

  11. Marlene Clausen on December 16, 2019 at 5:16 pm

    I so enjoy following your creative adventures. You certainly have inspired me to expand my horizons by combining a multitude of mediums I love. First, it was adding embroidery to fabric before cutting it for a project. Adding beading wasn’t far behind. Through a variety of projects, I keep expanding. I am currently working on designing a wall hanging that will include piecing, hand and machine quilting, beading, and hand embroidery. My favorite thread has become Superior Thread 12 wt Sew Sassy. I have really fallen for the dimension it adds to projects.

    I just knew you would fall for Chapala and never want to leave!

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 8:06 pm

      Thanks a bunch, Marlene. I’m always delighted to hear that my work has inspired someone to cast their creative net a wee bit wider. It makes sharing the journey worthwhile.

      And you are totally right. Chapala has truly become our home and we are in no hurry to be anywhere else.

  12. Karin McElvein on December 16, 2019 at 6:23 pm

    Love it. Not sure how to do some of the stitches

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 8:14 pm

      I understand your comment about the stitches, Karin. This piece was a real learning experience for me. As I mentioned in the post, Mary Corbet’s Lattice Jumble eBook was my go-to reference for learning how to do the lattice work.

      I’m a learn-when-I-need-to stitcher. I see something that I like, and I hunt down instructions to figure it out. It’s not always an elegant process, but the end result is usually pretty good.

  13. Anna Mae Gazo on December 16, 2019 at 7:11 pm

    Shelly, not sure this is the place to do so, but I have question about the Silhouette Class that I took from you 3 years ago. I have been going through the lessons again on Ruzuku. I recently saw the video where you go through the process of loading the mat and adjusting the rollers. I wanted to watch it again — still trying to make friends with this machine. Today I see the video needs me to sign into Vimeo, and as I don’t have an account, it won’t let me see it. Actually it says it can’t find the page. I’m puzzled as the content is at Ruzuku. From your blog, I didn’t understand that the Ruzuku content would be discontinued. The video I am looking for is the freezer paper demo at the end of the Overview. Do you know what is going on, please? Thanks for any help you can give.
    Anna Mae Gazo

    • ShellyStokes on December 16, 2019 at 8:09 pm

      Hola Anna Mae, the Ruzuku classroom is still up and running. I’ll have to make a note to see why the videos are an issue. I’ll send you a reply in the email.

      • Anna Mae Gazo on December 17, 2019 at 9:16 am

        Thank you so much! I’m enjoying going through the class again, and I appreciate all the work you did to put that class together. Your piece in the this blog is very beautiful, and I wish you the best in your new home in Mexico — such an adventure!

  14. Kerry MCCall on December 16, 2019 at 7:16 pm

    Your work is so beautiful, I enjoyed learning about your journey. Your workmanship is incredible. Thank you so much for sharing. Kerry

  15. Cynthia Crull on December 16, 2019 at 8:45 pm

    Hi Shelly, I too took your wonderful class 3 years ago. I haven’t tried to access them recently, so I don’t know if I would have the problem Anna Mae did. I have a whole folder of “posts from the past” in my email. I am not so familiar with blogging, but I may have to keep up with yours. Your imagination doesn’t stop and just fires off new things in mine. I’m 84 though, so sometimes it only gets to thinking and playing. Fine with me! Welcome back!

    • ShellyStokes on December 27, 2019 at 10:44 am

      Ah, it’s good to see such enthusiasm at 84. My sweetie is 87 now, and still going strong. His current diversion is studying Spanish. 🙂

  16. Charles A Peavey on December 16, 2019 at 10:49 pm

    Glad to see you around the place again! Chapala beats Minnesota in January bigtime! I know I’ve been both and love Tlaquepaque!

  17. Maggie Martin on December 17, 2019 at 8:49 am

    I cannot do better than the prior comments, YOU and Star Flower 2 are so welcome back in my little world.
    Thank you


    • ShellyStokes on December 27, 2019 at 10:45 am

      Thanks, Maggie. It’s good to be welcomed back. 😉

  18. Joan on December 17, 2019 at 9:11 am

    Hi Shelly! Looks like you are doing great! I frequently reminisce about the Guatemala trip.
    This piece is stunning. I love it. Did I miss what size it is?
    I am finishing up some winter quilts and I want to take my sewing to another level. This type of project will be just the thing.; of course on a smaller scale to start. I am excited!
    Take care,

    • ShellyStokes on December 27, 2019 at 10:46 am

      Hey Joanie! So nice to hear from you. That trip was nothing short of amazing. I’m going back in February for the rug-hooking tour/experience along with a friend from Australia. It should be amazing!

  19. Elizabeth A Franck on December 17, 2019 at 3:31 pm

    Hi Shelly: It is wonderful to hear from you! Making a move from Minnesota
    to Mexico…. is major. You deserved to take as much time off as you needed.

    Your “Starflower 2” is magnificent! Unfortunately, for me, my hand sewing days are
    behind me. However, all the other aspects of creating with fabric, stencils, paints, etc.
    are still possible….. My current limitations are the result of cataracts with surgeries in the 2nd
    and 4th week of January, God willing, my vision will be much better.

    I look forward to hearing from you, in the future. Best Wishes for a Joyous Christmas
    and an Exciting New Year. Elizabeth A. Franck

    • ShellyStokes on December 27, 2019 at 10:47 am

      Good luck withe the cataract procedures, Elizabeth. I had mine done a few years ago — when I was having a horrible time finishing a big project.