As I said when showing my brilliant idea with the waste canvas - it would disappear if it didn't work. At least I know WHY it didn't work, so shall do it again, (later) having learned what NOT to do.
The main mistake I made was substituting a thread I didn't think would work well anyway, as I couldn't find what I wanted in the stash drawer.
I've worked on this one yesterday and today, and it looks rather fine to me right now. However, I'm awfully tired of looking at it, so will put it away for a day or two before deciding what else to do. I'll ruin it if I continue today, and I have several others almost ready to embellish.
This looks a lot better in person, as I wasn't watching the placement for taking a picture, and the shine of the Satin Floss on the fly stitch sea weed looks much much lighter and brighter than it actually is. The Memory Thread fly stitch (isn't that clever?!!) coral is actually the focal point of this ornament.
As for the Memory Thread, this was incredibly easy, having already practiced on the other one, and I found that if I use a size 16 tapestry needle to make the little hole for poking through the wire, it is very simple The little French Knot polyps are made with DMC Satin Floss - two very tight wraps.
Next, the Star Fish!! I used the Sea Grass by The Thread Gatherer for this, and the width, softness, and matte finish of it was wonderful for creating another little sea critter.
You can see in the detail how it looks up close. I made a five point "raised spider web," but didn't go all the way to the ends of the spokes - so it looks more like a star. To make the five point base, a simple fly stitch is made, and then two spokes placed to make the star.
When weaving the web, this thread is delightful, as it is flat, and with care, it lies nicely between the spokes.
The other little raised web on the left is made on 8 spokes, as I wanted it to be solid, and hopefully resemble a Sea Urchin. BTW, the sand on this ornament is worked in my version of "T-Stitch."
The research via photographs of these things is an incredible learning experience - I had no idea that the shapes and colors are absolutely endless, and I have to guard against getting too carried away on one piece - adding too much "stuff." I'll just have to get a lot of backgrounds stitched so I can go on playing!!
The next one is showing progress on the concentric circle drawing that Anne suggested - and it's almost into the last step of the blending - ready for a fine, big Sea Fan, I hope.
The last photo is from an AHA! moment, when I realized there is a lot going on underwater, and that I could use my favorite Nobuko stitch - which is a lot faster than doing basketweave. The arrow points to the first color change, and I'm please with this choice, as there are "notches" where the next layer fits in, instead of a straight line. It's also a welcome bit of variety in the look.
Another bad mistake I made on the first ornamant was that the ripple of the stitch was too thick to be able to make neat, tidy stitches on the waste canvas. It was a battle I didn't win. Nobuko is nice and flat.
I realize that this post is very long - one could drink the whole pot of coffee while reading it - or just move on to somewhere else easier to get through. After this one, I'll try hard to do each one as I progress on it - not daily, but often.