Wednesday, January 20, 2010

South of the border

My next project is an adaptation to needlepoint of several design elements I came across in researching Mexican art. At this point, I'm seeing the end product of this canvas as a lid insert for a black five-inch-square Sudberry box, which I fortunately found while raiding my stash last year.

At the center of this design is an "Ojo de Dios," or "God's Eye," a symbol of seeing and understanding the unknown and unknowable for the Huichol tribe of northwestern Mexico. It is formed by crossing two sticks, with the four points representing the elements of earth, air, fire and water.

When a child is born into the Huichol tribe, its father weaves the center "eye"with yarn to join the sticks, adding another "eye" for each subsequent year of the child's life. When the child reaches the age of five, the "Ojo de Dios" is complete. In the Huichol culture, it is thought that this symbol will bring health, prosperity and long life to the weaver as well as the person for whom it is being made.

In keeping with tribal simplicity, I'll be stitching this canvas exclusively with cotton floss and perle cotton, adding dimension and visual interest with my choice of stitches for the various sections of the design. Do come back and check my progress over the weekend!


Possibilities, Etc. said...

As always, I'll enjoy watching you stitch - and I love the design. I'm a student of Mexican history and culture myself (as well as Mariachi Vargas).

Anonymous said...

I've been staring at this for a while now, trying to figure out how I would stitch it. Now I can't wait to see if my ideas match with yours. Probably not. I love the earthy colors too.

Cool City Stitcher said...

I'll also be looking forward to this one. I've learned so much from your projects, and my own stitching has improved as a result. Thanks!

Cyn said...

Hi Anne,

This one is going to be interesting to watch as it's a bit of a departure from your "normal" design style. :-)

I've made many God's Eyes using stitcks and yarn. They are also fun to make using toothpicks and string. A bit fiddly but turn out very delicate.

Windy Meadow

Front Range Stitcher said...

Nice design. I'm looking forward to following your progress.

LIZ said...

Terrific design! Can't wait to see what stitches you choose!