Ukraine Solidarity Stitch-A-Long
As I received the news of the unprecedented and brutal attack on Ukraine, I struggled with what to do with my feelings of unease and horror at what the Ukrainian people are facing. Today I woke up and thought perhaps I could engage in a contemplative activity in which I could focus prayers and positive energies directed to all those who are and will be suffering gravely. So I spent the day today designing a cross-stitch pattern that I could practice contemplative stitching on. I then thought I should share this by making it a kind of solidarity stitch-a-long and encouraging others to join me on this special stitch-a-long in honor of the Ukrainian people.
Why a cross-stitch design?
The Ukrainian people have had a long, proud tradition of embroidery, and this small piece is inspired by traditional Ukrainian embroidery designs.
Based on Ukrainian tradition the symbols in this piece mean:
The cross = protection from evil.
The star = strength and serves as a protection from disease and evil.
The heart = love and harmony, and a united family.
The white dove (flying over heart) = peace.
The wavy lines = the stream of time and evolution.
The key/sigil = protection from negative influences.
The square = well-being, peace, and fortune. It also means perfection, harmony, and order. In the Ukrainian tradition, the square is the symbol of earth.
The colors also have meaning in the Ukrainian tradition:
Yellow = wellbeing, joy, and vital energy.
Blue = healing and spiritual calm, and it protects those who are most vulnerable.
Red = life energy, love, and joy.
Black = the earth, wealth, and wellbeing.
White = innocence and purity.
Green = youth, beauty, and calm.
I have matched the yellow and blue threads to the official colors of the Ukrainian flag (see the thread color conversion chart below) by converting the official RGB colors to DMC thread colors.
How to practice this Solidarity SAL:
This is a project that is meant to take slowly and with a particular focus. Here is how I practice this solidarity stitching:
With each stitch, offer a prayer of strength and support, while reflecting on the challenges facing the Ukrainian people. Pause periodically, breathe and envision a world at peace and in harmony. Then continue infusing each stitch with strength and support.
When I stitch with black thread, I connect to the stability of the earth. With each stitch in red, I connect to life energy, love, and joy. With each stitch in yellow, I connect with wellbeing and vital energy. As I stitch the cross I focus on protecting the Ukrainian people from harm. And as I move on to stitch the star, I focus on protecting the Ukrainian people from negativity and evil.
This focused stitching takes a bit of energy, so I devote a short amount of time each day to it--but it also raises energy that I release into the world and in turn, send to all Ukrainian people all over the world.
Please share this pattern and encourage others to join in this special solidarity stitch-a-long. May we, together, through our creative forces, wake people up to the horrors that Ukrainian people face and to the truth of how fragile democracy among people can be. Through stitching may we all become stronger and closer together! (Note: I ask that you not use the pattern for personal gain. If you sell anything made from the pattern, please donate the money to support the Ukrainian people.)
You are welcome to join the One Point Mind Mystery SAL Facebook Group and share your process working on the Ukraine Solidarity SAL:
May our creative energies guide the world to peace and harmony!
2/24/2022 05:45:03 pm
2/27/2022 10:25:31 am
Thank you so much for the thoughtful design. I will get supplies together immediately and start this piece. I would also like to find a place for donations that go directly to those in need. If anyone knows a source please let me know.
2/27/2022 03:05:59 pm
Will be thinking and hoping for a miracle to end all war and bring peace back to the hearts of everyone.
2/28/2022 09:46:58 pm
Thank you so much for this. I am happy for the opportunity to mindfully stitch this beautiful pattern to memorialize the citizens of Ukraine and their unbelievable struggle inflicted upon them by Russia’s Putin.
3/6/2022 02:00:17 am
So glad to see this solidarity stitch-along. To answer about helping people out, just this morning I purchased one night in a room at a Ukrainian home via Air BnB. I made sure this was an individual, family-owned place and paid for a room that I will never use. The family sent me a quick message of thanks. One day I will go over to Ukraine. My family is from nearby Czech Republic. In addition, I am supporting a Russian/Ukrainian language school called Nova Mova, as the supporters of the Go Fund Me campaign provide much programming that my own students use. I hope that people can donate even just $5 because every bit helps. This is my second stitch along for Ukraine. I am certainly enjoying the charts I am getting! Slava Ukraini!
3/6/2022 10:48:16 am
Thanks for the idea to support an airbnb...I've been supporting cross stitch designers through etsy and sent a donation to unicef, but we still need to support those who are hunkering down defending their country.
3/6/2022 09:34:27 am
Thank you for the lovely pattern! I finished it yesterday- praying and stitching. It was a blessing!
Debra J Ruffing
3/16/2022 08:59:12 am
Is there a black and white chart or a chart instead of just the picture. I can't see the squares to stitch this. It is important to me to do this.
2/24/2022 07:25:23 pm
Mahalo for this design. I will stitch it and do as you ask with each stitch.
2/26/2022 03:35:27 pm
Thank you and may we raise peace and strength for all.
2/24/2022 07:52:44 pm
So thoughtful. Great idea. I'll try to stitch this, thanks!
2/24/2022 08:05:19 pm
2/25/2022 01:18:27 am
I feel so hopeless watching the news reports about the Ukrainian. I will commit to doing this and with each stitch thinking of the men, women, and children whose lives will never be the same. Thank you for designing it.
2/26/2022 03:36:39 pm
Thank you for participating in this stitching for Ukrainian solidarity, peace and strength.
2/25/2022 05:14:12 am
Gracias. Todo el mundo está pensando en el conflicto.
2/25/2022 05:27:25 am
We will stand with Ukraine. Thank you for this pattern
2/25/2022 07:43:13 am
What a beautiful and meaningful design. My stitching plate us full right now, but I will still set aside some time each day to stitch on this with purpose. Thank you for sharing.
2/26/2022 03:38:52 pm
Just a few minutes a day, a few stitches made with prayers of peace, strength and healing, can be felt by everyone around the world, especially for the Ukrainian people.
2/25/2022 07:45:52 am
Prayers to Ukraine & thank you for the designs.
2/25/2022 07:46:08 am
Thank you for this, I am planning to get the threads reqd and make a start straight after work today.
2/26/2022 03:40:44 pm
Thank you for taking part in this. And I too hope this comes to an end, every second longer is a second too long. May we all have peace, love, and good health.
2/25/2022 07:50:27 am
Thank you. This will make me feel better about the plight of the Ukranians.
2/25/2022 07:55:17 am
Thank you! I can’t wait to do this with intention!
2/25/2022 08:04:50 am
What a beautiful way to pray and place our focus on the One above. Will pray for Ukraine and the world, for peace.
2/25/2022 10:41:08 am
Дуже дякую за вашу солідарності ))) Vyshyvannya (embroidery) is one way in which we tell our stories and identify ourselves as Ukrainian and has been used in as an act of protest (it was illegal to wear vyshyvanka at times in our history, and there are stories of family linens being buried to protect them during the many periods of violence Ukraine has been subjected to)
2/26/2022 03:43:33 pm
I am so sorry for your suffering in this. I hope this stitching will provide you some comfort, knowing that now hundreds of people are engaging in stitching this design and offering prayers for Ukraine.
2/25/2022 11:35:16 am
How simply fabulous......
2/25/2022 11:40:57 am
Sending prayers 🙏🙏🙏
2/25/2022 12:10:47 pm
Prayers to Ukraine and thank you for the designs.
2/25/2022 03:07:11 pm
Thank you for this- now I can sublimate my rage, helplessness, and anxiety into something productive and meaningful.
2/26/2022 03:45:15 pm
Thank you for participating in this, and I hope it helps to release the negative emotions and raise up the positive ones so we can send strength out to those who desperately need it!
Oonagh Nora williams
2/25/2022 05:47:51 pm
I studied in Lithuania and know the fight they had, and how they and so many other places finally gained their freedom. We have to prevent Russia from over running Ukraine and threatening democracy. thank you for this.
2/25/2022 07:26:12 pm
I will try to stitch with you if my tears don't take over. My heart hurts. Thank you for doing this wonderful gesture.
2/26/2022 04:53:20 am
We are thinking off every one living in Ukraine stay strong. My thoughts go out to you all.
2/26/2022 07:02:32 am
Thank you so much. I will start this design today. I will pray and send love with each stitch.
2/26/2022 07:40:10 am
Thank you for offering this pattern. I have printed it and will start it today. Praying for the people in Ukraine.
2/26/2022 08:36:03 am
God Bless You All!! printed, kitted and starting to stitch as soon as I press send here in Canada. Then I will display proudly and pray for a safe end to this madness. Stand Strong .....the world is behind Ukraine!!
2/26/2022 03:46:14 pm
2/26/2022 09:21:51 am
2/26/2022 09:32:29 am
This is beautiful, both visually and in its purpose. I’m currently in the middle of a project that’s from a Ukrainian pattern but I’m going to set it aside and start this. Thank you for creating this. God bless and protect Ukraine.
2/26/2022 10:26:42 am
What a beautiful way to send loving energy to the people of Ukraine. My partner is deeply hurting for her people right now and I haven’t known how to show some extra support - this will certainly help us both. Thank you
2/26/2022 03:47:47 pm
I am so sorry for your partner's suffering. I hope this project will help process the pain and raise up strength, hope and peace in knowing that as of this moment, hundreds of people are working on this project together!
2/26/2022 12:06:42 pm
Thank you for the pattern! Will kit it up today and start it today or tomorrow. God bless you all! My thoughts and prayers are with the people in the Ukraine.
2/26/2022 12:48:19 pm
This is so beautiful - thank you so much for sharing. I don't cross-stitch, but I am a beader - and I have Ukranian heritage from my maternal grandmother, and so recognize these patterns from making pysanky when I was younger. Would you mind if I beaded this pattern?
2/26/2022 01:44:17 pm
Please, by all means create a beaded version. There are a few others who are also creating a beaded version.
2/26/2022 03:16:21 pm
2/26/2022 12:48:44 pm
I started searching for cross stitch-alongs. Will there be a # that we can follow for this design. It will be beautiful, started it for a few minutes last night.
2/26/2022 03:49:53 pm
People can follow on my Facebook page One Point Mind Mystery SAL, but I hope other will create their own groups and work on this project together and share it with others everywhere!
2/26/2022 01:13:22 pm
Just started and shared website with 2 of my stitching buddies. Love a way to show solidarity with Ukraine and you combined it with my favorite pastime. Thank you.
2/26/2022 03:28:21 pm
Thank you so much. My daughter is from Ukraine. We are part of a larger Ukrainian community in the Twin Cities. I will share it with them.
2/26/2022 03:51:32 pm
I am so sorry for the suffering you and your daughter must be experiencing. I hope this project will provide some comfort, if not in the stitching, then at least in knowing that hundreds of people all over are working on this piece offering prayers of peace, strength, and hope.
2/26/2022 05:16:42 pm
Thank you for this pattern. Contemplative stitching helps the stitcher to relax. Focusing on prayers for Ukraine while stitching is something I will enjoy. My grandmother and aunt are Ukrainian. Anything we can do, pray, stitch and above all hope for their protection is definitely worthwhile.
2/26/2022 06:27:29 pm
I will keep your family in my prayers as I stitch.
2/26/2022 06:01:48 pm
As a Ukrainian crosstitcher, living in America.
2/26/2022 06:26:30 pm
May you find comfort and support in the community of stitchers who are infusing each stitch with a prayer for your people.
2/26/2022 06:29:23 pm
Thank you so much for creating this. I have an embroidery tutor/designer/friend from the Ukraine. Over the past couple of years she has created a wonderful international stitching community. She has shared with us the joy and beauty of her country and culture. I will make this on honor of her and all of the citizens of Ukraine!
2/26/2022 06:35:49 pm
I am so touched by this. Those of us who practice the needle arts have gained a lot from the Ukrainian embroidery traditions. I hope that with many people doing this little project will help honor that tradition and offer support and peace to the people of Ukraine.
Amanda Shaw Pronko
2/26/2022 06:35:17 pm
Thank you for this I will stitch it tomorrow and share it with my friends
2/26/2022 08:00:00 pm
Thank you so much for this design. I started it today and have said many prayers for the people of Ukraine and their families and friends around the world. I pray for a lasting peace to come quickly.
2/26/2022 08:38:19 pm
Thank you so much for this. I started working on it today. 💙💛
2/26/2022 10:14:57 pm
Hi- so I really want to stitch this, but have some visual issues and can't read patterns unless they are a clear square with a color symbol. My eyes are unable to focus on the look of this type of pattern. Is there any way to load a pattern that I can use?
2/26/2022 10:25:13 pm
I have added a color symbol chart.
2/26/2022 10:44:31 pm
Thank you so much. I have started this and am praying as I stitch. I have looked up Ukrainian names and am praying for many names individually as well as for all. Thank you for all of the comments and explanation of vyshyvannya
2/27/2022 01:06:01 am
Beautiful. Would work up nice in crochet … C2C, SC, or Tunisian.
2/27/2022 01:34:26 am
Merci pour cette initiative.
2/27/2022 11:15:00 am
Thank you, Antony. I shared this with my stitching friends in the hopes that they too may gain some peace during their contemplation of the plight of the Ukrainian people. It's a very sad time. My heart aches for those going through this in what only last week was a peaceful life.
2/27/2022 02:50:00 pm
ik zal het borduren en een tegeltje van maken , ga het ophangen in de kamer
2/27/2022 04:34:33 pm
Thank you for the beautiful design and thoughtful project. My heart aches for all in Ukraine.
2/27/2022 04:37:44 pm
Thank you so much for this thoughtful design. I'm going to stitch it for my son-in-law and his family who are from Ukraine. Many are here in the United States now, but he still has relatives in Ukraine including his grandmother, aunt, uncle and cousins. The men are joining the army and Baba Zina is defending her farm on the outskirts of Kyiv. Such a tragic situation for a wonderful country.
2/27/2022 05:10:05 pm
I will be thinking of you family as I stitch and offer my prayers for their safety!
2/28/2022 08:41:54 am
This is beautiful and I can’t wait to start stitching. I plan on making several and give to all my family and neighbors who share this heritage and feel the horror and sadness personally. Thank you so much for creating this and sharing it with us. I pray constantly for peace.
2/28/2022 03:54:22 pm
Thank you for this beautiful cross stitch tribute to Ukraine! I cannot cross stitch right now; because of my eye site; but I may try to paint it; if that is okay.
2/28/2022 05:22:20 pm
I think it would be wonderful to make this as a painting. Infuse each brush stroke with a prayer for peace and healing for Ukraine. The more creative positive energy we can release the more it will spread, and the world desperately needs it!
2/28/2022 05:18:21 pm
Thank you for this BEAUTIFUL design!!
3/1/2022 08:28:50 pm
This is a beautiful design and thoughtful SAL for those of us who are praying for Ukraine.
Susan S Douglas
3/1/2022 09:32:23 pm
Thank you for the beautiful pattern! Looking forward to stitching it.
3/4/2022 07:18:42 pm
I am a patchworker so have adapted your pattern, we will auction it to raise funds to go to Ukraine. We will do this through my CWA Woy Woy Branch (country women's association)
3/4/2022 09:00:41 pm
This is wonderful! Thank you for translating the design to a new medium and making it an opportunity to help the Ukrainian people! I am so grateful!
3/4/2022 11:16:46 pm
entirely my pleasure 🙏🏻
Cari L Cook
3/4/2022 08:57:35 pm
Thank you for this beautiful design. I am now joining you and the others in stitching this piece. I appreciate your comments and explanations of the colors and also how to think/meditate while stitching. May God bless the Ukrainian people and ,as this conflict soon end.
3/4/2022 10:36:06 pm
Thank you so much. I need this to help settle my mind. I pray for Ukraine and it’s people. They are in my thoughts almost continuously. I believe our collective energy and prayers will help. I need to believe that.
3/16/2022 09:08:02 am
The more people focusing their minds on peace and wellbeing, the more of that energy is released into the world. Already those of us who are working on this pattern have released these energies, leading to raising awareness, monies, and support for the Ukrainian people. That is wonderful! That is how we transform our worries and fears into real, positive actions...especially for many of us who don't have any way to directly act toward the situation we are witnessing. Thank you for helping in this!
3/6/2022 04:19:20 pm
Thank you. I finally feel that I can do something, small as it might be. Beautiful design.
3/10/2022 05:14:53 pm
Prachtig. Ik maak er zeker ook .💛💙💛💙💛💙👋🙏
3/24/2022 05:09:57 pm
I have stitched a little on this almost every day. Thank you for the design and the few minutes of peace that it brings me.
4/7/2022 09:06:08 pm
Thank you! I have shared this pattern with my mother and daughter. We three generations are stitching this design with hopes of peace.
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About My Work
Before I became a monk I made a living creating art. When I took the five Buddhist precepts in 2002 I was given the dharma name Do'an (pronounced Doe-ahn), which loosely means "path of the eye". From that moment on, the focus of my art shifted toward contemplative practice, in which I used meditation and breath to facilitate my creativity. I studied Asian brush painting and calligraphy techniques, which had a great influence on my painting style and composition. In 2008 I discovered fiber. I learned to knit, spin yarn, needle felt and weave.