Laurel is a broadleaf evergreen that was once given to winners of the Olympiad - the Olympic Games held every four years on the Summer Solstice in ancient Greece. Laurel still symbolizes victory, achievement and triumph, and is often used today on military medals.
To create your own gift for the triumphant athlete or scholar in your life, the bird in the center of the design can easily be changed to a date, monogram or other small image, to personalize the project.
Embroidery stitches used in my sample include the stem stitch, a French knot for the eye, and running stitch for the chest detail on the bird.
The finished design can be framed, as I intend to do, or stitched onto a pillow front, tote or ready-made item of clothing. The image would also look terrific on kitchen towels or the ends of a table runner.