Here is the mermaid, with garnets in her hair and a rather fancy mirror.
Here she is in her grotto, but not quite done.
And here she is in the grotto with fish, shells and semi-precious stone chips. I am especially please with the freshwater pearl in the shell - that is a real shell from a family vacation that actually stayed joined.
I am very happy with how it has all turned out. And it was so much fun. For the final bits I was able to consult my own copy (as opposed to the university library copy which I have returned) of "English Embroidery in the Metropolitan Museum, 1580-1700:'Twixt Art and Nature". My DH got it for me for Mother's Day and found it online at list price still in the shrink wrap!! If, like me, you missed getting this book and now can only find it for over $100, you will appreciate the find. I was able to look through the pieces in the book that had water to decide what I wanted to do with the purl since the instructions gave a couple of suggestions for variations.
Now I have all the amazing leftover threads to hoard. I've always had a problem using my best threads for small or experimental things, and these threads need something really wonderful. So I have some thinking to do. In the meantime, I have a coif to work on and the president's challenge for my EGA chapter to start (and finish by our June meeting!).