When a fellow swapper listed the USSR/Soviet Russia among her favorite themes, The Modern-European-History-Major-With-An-Eastern-Europe-Concentration couldn’t resist taking up the project and making her a fantastic Soviet themed hoop.

Trying to glean anything I could remember from my many classes on Russian History, I finally settled on combining an architectural icon with the feel of a propaganda poster, resulting in this hoop:

White cotton color-tinted with crayon, outlined with a simple backstitch. I really love the effect of the crayon—it gives it the quality of a handdrawn picture, and gives me a way to add detail, a rough texture and shading….

combine that with a bright, bold design, I think it really does begin to take on attributes of a propaganda poster.

The inspiration behind the building/statue in teh foreground was this:

It’s the Soviet Pavilion at the 1939 World’s Fair in New York. an odd building to pick, but my first choice was the much more famous 1937 pavilion, but the statue on that has two figures instead of one, so I found myself stitching 1939 for the sake of simplicity.

The building is an interesting one though; it’s apparently 1/3 larger than fair rules technically allowed. But this is the USSR we’re talking about, of course they plan to be the biggest and the best. As the story goes, The USA and the USSR engaged in a building competition of sorts to see whos would be tallest (typical). The USA added something to their building that put it slightly larger, so the USSR added something to theirs. In response, USA adds a taller flagpole on top, the USSR adds a star to the hand of their giant statue. And so on, until finally the ruling committing put a halt to the building. Not sure who ultimately “won”….neither result would surprise me.

Looking back, there are a few changes I’d make to this hoop if I were to do it over, but overall I’m satisfied with the results! I hope it is well-loved by its recipient!