Stitching In Progress: Villages of Hawk Run Hollow

Being a hockey blogger has put a giant spoke in the wheel of my stitching progress. In prior years I’ve finished dozens of projects in no time, earning me the nickname “Threads of Fire”. Not so much anymore. All that game diarizing over at IPB means no stitching time, and no stitching time means I’ve completed something like three or four small pieces between this time last year and now. However, the instant the hockey season ended, my stitching mojo came back in full force; a hockey season’s worth of Threads of Fire burst to the surface. I finished “1824” and then started in on “The Shores of Hawk Run Hollow” (because finishing one piece means you’ve earned the right to start something new, even though you have 8,000 UFO’s [unfinished objects] in the basement stash). “The Shores”, or “MFB By The Sea” was going swimmingly — see what I did there? — but… Well, I feel in love with a different piece, “The Villages of Hawk Run Hollow”, designed by Carriage House Sampings. I had been underwhelmed by it when it was first published, but the more I looked at it, the more I found it irresistible. The graveyard! The apple orchard! The blacksmith! It’s all so wonderfully detailed, and the colors are so fabulously Autumnal. The fact that KtG came for a visit when my resolve to keep working on “MFB By The Sea” was at its weakest didn’t help — if you ever need to be talked into starting a new project, KtG is your gal!

On June 28th, 2008, I started “Village of Hawk Run Hollow”. (Sadly, that title doesn’t lend itself to an obvious “MFB-ification”.) 5 weeks later, I’ve decided to start taking pictures of the piece in progress. In those five weeks of stitching on average about three hours a night, I’ve completed one and a third of 12 squares. Not bad! Of course, I know that when the hockey season starts up again, I’ll be down to averaging about six hours a week, so I don’t imagine having this done for another…oh say… three years! (And that’s assuming I don’t get talked into starting something new between now and then, which is highly unlikely since I’m planning a stash-renewal trip to the Attic in August.) I’m hoping to take In Progress pictures every Sunday to see how things are buzzing along.

One and a Third Squares Finished!

Still A Loooooong Way To Go

The Back

I am a little obsessed with how the backs of my pieces look, but once they get framed, I can’t ever see the back again. This picture is so I can revisit the back of this one long after it’s framed. Assuming it ever gets finished…

My Favorite Detail of The First Finished Square

The fun in this piece is in the details. My favorite part of the first square I finished (technically, the third square of the piece) is the stone foundation of City Hall. I though it would be a pain to stitch, but it zipped right along! I worked on this square while watching MacGyver, which taught me one thing — MacGyver was not designed for people who were going to be stitching while watching. There were so many instances of “action” where there was no indication whatsoever what was happening if you were only listening. I needed Doc Emrick to be calling play-by-play for Mac’s big action scenes!

My Helper-Kitty

Rollie adores sleeping on my lap with piece of linen draped over her. These giant “Hawk Run Hollow” pieces are her absolute favorite, since there’s a lot of linen for draping! I figure having a few (okay, a lot) cat hairs (aka “threads of love”) stuck in linen is worth having a happy, purring cat in my lap.


Filed under Pins and Needles, Progress Reports, Stitching

20 responses to “Stitching In Progress: Villages of Hawk Run Hollow

  1. Good evening ladies,

    The pieces are beautiful. =)

    I was wondering if you have a preference for hoop or scroll frames. I have a hoop and hate it. My fabric keeps falling out, so I’m constantly stretching it. Then when it gets done, it needs to be flattened for 2 full hockey seasons before it looks like my nephews haven’t used it to play!

    Oh and I can’t wait for the day the back of my piece looks like that neat!

  2. Schnookie

    We don’t use hoops or frames at all. Hoops are verboten in our house — Boomer was very draconian about them when she was teaching us how to stitch, precisely because they stretch the fabric so terribly. Our older sister KtG is quite fond of working on a frame, but the rest of us don’t like how non-portable they make your stitching. Pookie could use one if she wanted to, because she “rocks” her needle when she stitches (dipping the needle through the in hole and the out hole in one motion, so her hand stays in front of the fabric the whole time), but Boomer and I are both “stabbers”, so we reach our hands behind the fabric on each stitch to pull the thread all they way through. That is very tiresome on a frame.

    Anyway, I say to just let it all hang out! Chuck the hoop! Dash the frame! You don’t need them! Sure, your fabric might end up a bit wrinkly or wadded up when you’re done, but that’ll all steam out! It certainly won’t look like your nephews have had at your work! :D

  3. hmmm, commando, eh. Interesting…

    As a “stabber” it does tire my arm, a lot, to keep going around the hoop. I shall try commado.

    I taught myself how to stitch and have no friends that stitch, so the tips are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks! =)

  4. Good LORD, Pookie. I am in awe. That’s some hardcore work right there! I meant to tell you I’d take a picture of the back of Circling Alphabets for you, just so you know.

    MFB Village is awesome! And OMG, the detail! Jeez. Awesome job!

  5. Schnookie

    Commando’s the only way to be! :D (I’m so glad we’ve met people online who want to talk to us about stitching!)

    And yeah, Caitlin, time to fess up about the back of Circling Alphabets. It looks awesome, doesn’t it? Is that what you’re hiding? :P

  6. And yeah, Caitlin, time to fess up about the back of Circling Alphabets. It looks awesome, doesn’t it? Is that what you’re hiding? :P

    It doesn’t look anything like Pookie’s, I don’t think. :D

    And trust me, there are problems! I SWEAR, there are problems!

  7. Pookie

    NO HOOPS! It’s like my wire hangers. Or something. You actually can’t do the rocking stitch when the piece is on a frame or hoop because the fabric is too tight. Also, if I tried to use a hoop, Rollie would revolt because there would be nothing to drape over her! :D

    Chaz, I’m so glad to hear you’re also a stitcher! I am always happy to talk to other people about it!

    Caitlin, you’re probably ripping out your perfect stitching right now so you can be all, “No, it’s all wrong!” :P

    Speaking of mistakes, you can see the start of a tree trunk in the second square, right? Yeah, I totally did all the leaves in the wrong color two nights ago. Am I ripping it out? Hell no! It’s just my, erm, interpretation of a willow tree! It’s not that I misread the chart. No, not at all!

  8. Chaz, if it’s helpful, I only used hoops before the -Ookies intervened. Having done stamped cross stitch, where hoops really become a necessity to keep tension in the fabric, to counted cross stitch held a large temptation to stitch with a hoop. The -Ookies and Boomer suggested I work without one and I can’t imagine working WITH one again (unless it’s to do something stamped).

    Caitlin, you’re probably ripping out your perfect stitching right now so you can be all, “No, it’s all wrong!” :P

    So far, not a single stitch has been ripped! But it’s oh, so tempting. :D

    Rollie is ADORABLE! Awww, Rollie. My cat has to be banished when I stitch because the moving thread is too much of a temptation to start kitty playtime, which is usually bad for what I’m stitching.

  9. Schnookie

    Rollie enjoys playing with the moving threads, too. Normally she’s pretty well behaved, but every now and again Pookie will suddenly yelp, “Rollie, NO!” and I’ll look over and there’s Ms. Whiskers batting at the threads with her giant monkey paws.

  10. Thanks Caitlin!

    I tried a stamped cross stitch once and I couldn’t stand seeing the pattern through it. SO, I chucked it. I’m addicted to the counted cross stitch.

    I also have to agree that Rollie is adorable. I will fully admit, I hate cats. But that’s driven by my sever allergy to them. Unlike squirrels, which I also hate, I will break and swerve for cats in the road. I think that means I’m a closet cat fan. I really do find cats adorable in pictures, just not when they’re sending me to the hospital. ='(
    **Sending Rollie good kitty vibes**

  11. Schnookie

    Unlike squirrels, which I also hate, I will break and swerve for cats in the road. I think that means I’m a closet cat fan.

    HAHAHAHAHA!!! I think that’s definitely a strong indicator of a secret fondness for cats! :P (If I was horribly allergic, I would probably hate them too.)

  12. Pookie

    Rollie enjoys playing with the moving threads, too. Normally she’s pretty well behaved

    The thing is that usually she sleeps peacefully, not paying me much attention but then all of a sudden she lunges like a shark at the thread. Seriously. It’s totally like Jaws.

  13. Seriously. It’s totally like Jaws.

    Hee! Tom just jumps up suddenly and then lays all over things, then you have to push him off.

    Oh yeah, and my mistakes are up! Heh. With backwork pictures for y’all. :D

  14. Beautiful work! I’m so jealous. What fabric are you using there?

    I’ve been working on an enormous sampler since the 4th of July. I was really proud because I had about 10% of it done, but it’s not nearly as detailed as what you have happening there.


  15. Pookie

    Erin, congrats on getting so much of a giant sampler done! 10% is totally the point where I say, “I’ve been so good, I’ve finished so much… Now I can start something NEW!” :D

    As for the fabric, it’s a hand-dyed linen from Lakeside Linens (my favorite) but I can’t remember which colorway. I can look it up when I get home. I think it looks pinker in this picture than it is in real life.

  16. What is the thread count? It looks really tight.

  17. Pookie

    It’s 40 count. I did the first “Hawk Run Hollow” on 36 but it was so huge, I decided to go 40 on this one. Most of the time I work on 40, but not exclusively.

  18. lovely piece and I like that Rollie appreciates you stitching :-)

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