If you spend much time looking at older (70’s & 80’s) painted canvases some characteristics might jump out at you.
The colors might seem dated (I’ve talked about it in this column on updating an old canvas)
Often there are large unbroken areas of color.
There is no colored background (this is often still true).
Kate Dickerson looked at some of her older pieces and has brought them up to date. She has, most importantly, added pattern to areas that were solid before. This creates a nice contrast between patterned and unpatterned areas. Yes stitches give you pattern, but unless you use multiple colors, your stitches will look like textures instead of patterns.
Where needed she added and freshened colors. We’ve learned that covering white canvas with colored thread doesn’t always work. By coloring areas that were uncolored before open stitches are possible and coverage is less of an issue.
See the before and after pictures and read about it in her recent blog post.