MV Obsession

My obsession with Martha's Vineyard.. phototography..genealogy and life in general and this and that…

Stitching The Vineyard…





This is my wall of Vineyard counted cross stitch projects. The Vineyard map in the upper left hand corner was the first one in 1993. Tisbury in the bottom middle was the last one in 2011. There were other non-MV projects done in between the Vineyard ones and I also did eight more of the Vineyard maps during that time too.


These are not the only Vineyard counted cross stitches I’ve done though. The one closest to my heart is the Tabernacle designed especially for me by my daughter Deb. (please excuse the glare).


The Tabernacle is my favorite place on the Vineyard for many reasons and so this picture means more to me than I can ever put into words.

This is my counted cross stitch masterpiece. My daughter Deb took a photograph of the Tabernacle… blew it up to an 8×10 and charted it by hand on graph paper. There might have been computer programs for that but this was the early 1990’s and she didn’t have one and I’m not sure we even had a computer!. She also bought the material and my daughter Patty bought the threads and that was my Christmas gift that year. All I had to do was sew it. People always ask how long it takes to do projects so I kept track. Over the course of 3 months I sewed a total of 138 hours… every inch of the picture is counted cross stitches… even all the blue sky… and there seemed like endless amounts of that. After it was finished we took it, along with the original 5×7 photograph and had it framed. For a couple of years I just wasn’t happy with the frame though so when I had my other MV counted cross stitches framed I gave this picture a new one. I also added a little plaque at the bottom that says The Tabernacle, Oak Bluffs – Martha’s Vineyard.

But I had said I couldn’t do it… ever… I would never be able to do counted cross stitch. Too hard. Too boring. I had too many excuses. Then my daughter Deb saw the counted cross stitch of the map of Martha’s Vineyard and the rest is history. We figured if I was ever to do counted cross stitching surely something Vineyard related would get me started. She even said that if I hated doing it she’d finish the map for me. Sounded like a good deal and so I began. One X after another… counting, counting every single stitch… but then it started looking like MV and I was pretty impressed and proud of myself.

We even got written up in the Vineyard Gazette… June 21, 1996



Author: mvobsession

I'm married, I have two daughters and two grandchildren and they all love MV. Enjoy my MV blog and contact me if I can answer any questions. This blog started out as strictly about Martha's Vineyard but over the years I've branched out to include other obsessions and interests. I enjoy photography and like sharing my photos here as well. I'm also into genealogy and reading. Hope you enjoy :)

18 thoughts on “Stitching The Vineyard…

  1. These is amazing lady. A truly piece of art. You must have a lot of patience. You are also very creative. I a fan of Lighthouses. I would love so much to be able to do something like this, but I do not believe I have the patience, even less the talent you have. Wish you the best. I wish more people could see this.

    • Thank you so very much for the kind words. Each one was a labor of love. I found it very relaxing actually, kept my fingers busy while watching TV instead of napping 🙂

  2. Wow! Joan, these are incredible! What a talent you have. Loved that write-up. These are legacy pieces that could end up in a MV museum someday.

  3. These are wonderful! Such beautiful hand work and displayed so beautifully

  4. I love them all! And am very blessed to be looking directly at one of your creations as I type this… on my own wall 🙂 Thank you again,friend.

  5. absolutely stunning Joan

  6. When I was first injured, over two decades ago, and unable to move I did x-stitching. I haven’t taken needle to clothe for over two decades. I still have the pieces. Nice work! I know how much work went into these! 🙂

  7. Love your photos and your MV collection. I have done several myself that I collected during the years we spent time on MV for the Fishing Derby in Sept/Oct. I am missing the Tisbury & Edgartown ones from my collection. Do you know where I can find them to cross stitch myself or are you willing to share the patterns and floss colors required? Any help you can give is greatly appreciated!

    • Hi and thank you. The only place I know of to get the kits was in Vineyard Haven in a store in the Tisbury Marketplace. I think it’s gone now and unfortunately I don’t have the patterns anymore. 😦

      • Thanks, figured it was a long shot but worth asking. Just found out the little shop in Vineyard Haven is open again. Plan to call tomorrow and see if they still carry any cross stitch stuff.

  8. Thank you for updating me and I hope you’re able to get what you need to make your collection complete 🙂

  9. Gorgeous. My favorite are those Bell towers. Their architecture differs from those which we have in my country. In Finland our Bell towers are generally separated from churches. They are mainly wooden ones as our many churches also. If You do not mind, I show You some Bell towers:

    Beautiful bell towers in Finland

    Have a wonderful day!

  10. Do you know where I can find any of these cross-stitch patterns now that Heath Hen is no longer there?

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