Today is a good day, because I finally get to update my blog. Forgive me, I'm actually going to publish two blog posts today, since I'm trying to catch up.
For this post I thought it would be fun to share with you all the pictures I took during a study on some peach blossom branches I harvested from my own peach tree.
I took this shot from underneath my tree! Love those pink blossoms against that beautiful blue sky.
Here's another shot from under the tree, a little closer up.
Here are the branches that I studied. Some branches on the tree had many more blossoms on them, as you can see above, but they were higher up and I don't do ladders. I am not about to die just to collect some flowers. Nope.
Let's take a closer look at the branches so you can see the structure and texture.
The main branch stems are brown, but some (not all!) of the smaller off-shooting branches have greenish stems. Flowers form on all sides of the branch, and have a small stem of their own separating them from the branch. The flowers tend to form in clusters in multiple points along the branch. At this stage in the tree's life cycle, there are tiny tufts of leaves only at the branch tips, not anywhere else along the branch.
One thing I want to mention is that my blossoms never fully opened. I assume it's something to do with the climate because it's been happening to all my neighbors' peach trees too. The blossoms just kind poof open but don't fully expand. So, half opened they were 3/4" wide (1.9 cm) so I estimate that they'd open to a full inch wide (2.5 cm). They will also turn a slightly lighter pink once they open.
Tiny little blossoms all in a row!
Each blossom has 5 petals, approximately 1/2" long by 3/8" wide. (1.3 cm L, .95 cm W)
I tried to tape a couple petals down so we could get a flat view of the shape of the petals, but they still curled up on me.
But they are ovals, with a teeny tiny point at the bottom.
There are 5 sepals on each flower, which are a reddish-brown color, sometimes with green spots on them. You can see those more clearly on the bud pictures below. Each sepal is 1/4" wide and 1/4" long (.64 x .64 cm).
The stamen are tiny brown dots with a white stem. The inner row of stamen are 1/4" (.64 cm) long, but they grow to 1/2" (1.3 cm) long for the second (outer) row. There are approximately 10 each of the 1/4" and 1/2" stamen.
The pistil is all yellow and 1/2" long (1.3 cm), located directly in the center of the stamen.
Let's take a look at the buds! (If you look at the close up branch pictures above, you'll see that there are tinier buds that I didn't pull off to picture below. Those are mostly just sepals bunched up tightly.)
The largest buds are 1/2" wide and 3/4 to 1" long, including sepals (1.3 cm wide and 1.9-2.5 cm long). The smaller buds are 3/8" wide and 1/2 to 3/4" long (.9 cm wide and 1.3-1.9 cm long)
The leaves form in tufts of multiple leaves, the longest of which are 3/4" long (1.9 cm). These do open up and spread out a little as the branch ages, just as the blossoms would if mine opened fully.
One last picture before we go! All the tiny pieces.
I hope you guys enjoyed this flower study! I have been studying lots of flowers, though I won't publish all of them because some are being used to make patterns for my upcoming book.
Hello! If you read my last post, then you know that I'm working on my next French Beaded Flower pattern. I'm doing my Dahlias! This pattern has been requested for a long time, so I'm excited that I'll finally be able to offer it.
I mentioned in my last post that I was going to do yellow with pink edging... but I changed my mind. The longer I looked at it, the less I liked it and it started to look garish and a little juvenile... and not realistic at all. I probably just chose the wrong beads, so I'll try that color combo again later. I've switched to yellow with white tips. I'm also using 2 cut satin beads, which are my absolute favorites in the whole wide world. The beads are sparkly AND silky, and they're just gorgeous. I'm planning on getting a video of the finished flowers catching the light so you can see the effect better. It's glorious!
I did make a few adjustments to my original Dahlia design - just adding in extra petals, really. So far I've got the petals finished. It was quite a task because there are so very many petals. I've got enough for a Large Dahlia and a Smaller one, plus a bud (might add a few more petals to that one). These petals still all need to be laced... (sewing across them with fine wire), so I guess they're not done-done. I'll be working on leaves and sepals next, between petal lacing sessions. If that goes quickly I might have time to add on a couple more buds. I'm still planning on publishing the pattern by the end of the month. Go fingers, go!
Here's a little preview of what the smaller Dahlia will look like once assembled. I tried so hard to get a shot like this of my Larger Dahlia, but there's just too many petals to hold together. I was surprised that I managed the smaller one.
Whenever I manage to get my hands on flowers, I take them apart to see how all the pieces connect. And so I can photograph, trace, and measure all the parts and pieces. I don't get to do it often, since I have a black thumb of death and can't seem to grow real flowers... and asking neighbors if I can dissect some of their flowers is just too much for a shy, socially awkward person like me. It really does help develop accurate patterns. Plus it's just plain fascinating.
Anyways, it's Spring now (yay!) which means flowers are starting to pop out everywhere. Including grocery stores. So I snagged myself a miniature daffodil plant. I took just a few flowers to study - one in each size that I saw on the plant. The largest was 2 1/2 inches wide. The smallest one (1 7/8" wide) just opened this morning. I meant to get pics and measurements for buds, too, but they popped open on me before I could get it done.
I'll probably go back and get the Hyacinth and tulips...
Happy Spring, everyone!
Hello everyone! I am Lauren Harpster, the designer behind Lauren's Creations. I am a 28 year old wife, and a mother to three adorable little kids. I've been making French Beaded Flowers for six years now, and teaching French Beading through my website for about four years. I hope you'll join me on my blog so you, too, can Learn the Art of French Beading.
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