Jan 5, 2012

The Tree of Hope: Design Inspiration

Sometimes inspiration sneaks up on you, sometimes it hibernates, and then there are times when it keeps you up at night.  The later is what happened to me soon after we sold our house this summer.

I'm a HUGE hiker - I love to take strolls in the woods accompanied by Cocoa.  Often those pictures show up in this blog and it was certainly a part of the inspiration of Uguisu Reflects on Ume.  There is this beautiful park right by where the new little LilyPad is located that we walk in every day.  There are several glorious White Oaks that have a bridge that runs right by them.

One day, little Cocoa decided to make a snack of several acorns from these tree on the bridge just under them. 
 As I stood there waiting for the little feast to finnish, I began the theorize how I could stitch that tree.  How I could replicate that wonderfully complicated bark, the waxy leaves, the wizened branches.  As I stood there, breathing in life itself, I began to envision what my future could be, what I'd like for it to be, and a really incredible calm came over me.  
So I went home.  I fed the pups and husband.  Spoke with my mom, my very pregnant SIL, my sister, Kermit. Nothing special about the night but that feeling just didn't leave me.  

Then I woke up at 2 am.  Am I the only one who has an hour in the middle of the night that occasionally turns my mind ON? I like to call it the Witching Hour.  Not sure why but this is generally when I have the best ideas, the most incredible inspiration, and when whatever it is that has been nagging me becomes apparent.  (Perhaps thats why I call it the Witching Hour).  

This is what my mind saw - The Tree of Hope (ToH):
Well, this isn't exactly what I saw.  This is just the outline of it.  In the picture above, I had drawn it, transitioned it to my computer, printed on transfer paper, and then stitched it on.  Click here if you would like to read about my transfer technique.

The ToH is intended to be a stylized design with rich bark, lush leaves, and even some Wee Birdies:


  1. Hi Christa

    Yes, I have a Withcing Hour when I awake and my mind will not switch off. It moves throughout the year, like the rising and setting of the sun. Currently it is around 4.00am

    I love the Tree of Hope design and as soon as I saw it, I started to consider how I would stitch it.

    I shall be very interested to see what you do with it.

  2. Mary MartinJanuary 05, 2012

    Hi Crista!

    I'm up from 2-3am nearly every night (though sometimes it's 3-4am), it seems like the only time I get peace and quiet lately. I understand! Most of the time I am able to sort out creative issues then. I love this design, and look forward to hearing how it came together.

  3. No, you aren't alone! I was kept awake recently thinking of stitching a fishing net using my hair as the thread...

  4. I'm so glad that I'm in great company in the middle of the night. It's the BEST time to sort things out, get a little extra stitching done, and even do a bit of blogging!

    Will have more on Tree of Hope this weekend.

  5. Hi Christa, I don't have a regular 'witching hour' but my current design did come to me in a dream! Does that count?

  6. Absolutely!! Dreams can be such great source for designs. The important thing is to be inspired! Can't wait to see what you are working on.


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