Official blog of www.NeedlePaint.com
where you can design your own Needlepoint!

Official blog of www.NeedlePaint.com – where you can design your own Needlepoint Kit!

Stitched and written By:  Peggy Bond

Day 3, Three French Hens Needlepoint Kit

French Hen Needlepoint Kit with Stitch Chart

The French hens were just too plump to put all three on the block so we only have one, sitting fat and happy on her flowering nest. No eggs in view!

All but one of the stitches for this and the next block can be found in The Needlepoint Book by Jo Ippolito Christensen. However, some are worked in different directions than shown in the book.

The head of our lonesome hen is stitched in Continental as are her comb and beak. Her eye is a French Knot. Her breast and tail are Kennan and the wing tips are alternation rows of Slanted Gobelin 2 x 2 and Continetal worked slanted from top left to right.

Flowers are Continental with their centers done is varying numbers of French Knots to fill the canvas. The branches are Continental as well, and the leaves are done in variations of the leaf stitch.

French Hen Needlepoint Stitch Guide

French Hen Needlepoint Stitch Guide

Victoria and Albert Herringbone

V and A Herringbone

The hen’s wing is done in Victoria and Albert Herringbone, show below. It is a variation of the standard Herringbone was adapted from a Victory and Albert Museum Handbook of embroidery stitches by Sherlee Lanz.

Background is Woven Plait which is similar to and simpler than the Victoria Albert Herringbone. The Woven Plait is a quick background stitch that has texture.

 

 

 

 

Day 4, Four Calling Birds Needlepoint

Four Calling Birds Needlepoint Canvas fully Stitched

Four Calling Birds Needlepoint Kit

The Four Calling Birds block is the other symmetrically designed block.

The yellow of the birds is done in Lazy Knitting, worked left to right on the left half and right to left on the right. The same is true for the Slanted Gobelin 2×2 of the tails and the green Slanted Gobelin 2×2 of the wing. Lazy Knitting is one of the more tedious stitches, but contrasting texture to the Slanted Gobelin makes it worth the effort.

Four Calling Birds Needlepoint Guide

Four Calling Birds Needlepoint Guide

The flower is done with 4 Scotch squares on each petal. It is edged in Satin to round out each petal. The flower center can be stitched in white Continental, or yellow French Knots or maybe some beads? There are possibilities on all or the blocks to add some flare with beads and/or sequins. Flower centers and eyes are obvious choices for these types of embellishments.

The leaves are variations of the Leaf stitch and branches are vertical or horizontal Gobelin. (The traditional Gobelin is a straight stitch over 2 threads of the canvas. It can be stitched horizontally or vertically. And, as used for the birds, it can be stitch on diagonally, i.e. over 2 strands horizontally and vertically making it twice the size one of the Tent stitches – Continental, Half Cross, or Basketweave.)

The background is the Diagonal Mosaic, not to be confused with the Mosaic stitched diagonally. Unlike the background of the Two Turtle symmetrical block, this background is worked continuously across the entire block. That is not stitched in opposite directions on each half.

Coming up a break from birds…. Five Golden Rings, the most complex of the 12 blocks!

As I explained in my previous blog, I used at least 20 different stitches on the 12 Days of Christmas. Most are simple and many are quick-cover. They are only suggestions and we would love to get your recommendations for different ones.

Day 1, the Partridge in a Pear Tree

Partridge in Pear Tree Christmas Needlepoint

Partridge in Pear Tree Christmas Needlepoint

I tried to choose stitches to add textures that would mimic feathers and tree trunk textures. The partridge’s green feathers are done is 2 different stitches. The head and small portion of green near the tail are stitched in Continental to give smoothness, while the breast is done in an Austrian V.

The Continental stitch is used for the pears, tree limbs, partridge’s top knot, gold stripes, gold tail feathers, red wing, and background to fill the small areas around the image. Tree trunk is the Knitting stitch and red tail feathers are varying lengths of Elongated Cashmere. The leaves are variation of the Leaf stitch, some longer and other at different angles than the traditional stitch. Leaves can also be done with a satin stitch.

Partridge in Pear Tree Stitch Chart

Partridge in Pear Tree Stitch Chart

(NOTE: The stitches, which are not diagramed, can be found in The Needlepoint Book by Jo Ippolito Christensen which is available from online book sellers and your local book store as a print book or eBook as well as in several needlepoint webpages.)

Austrian V Needlepoint Stitch

Figure 1 Austrian V

The Austrian V is 19th -century pattern taken from an Austrian Sampler of 1859. Typically, it is used is a vertical strip but it has been adapted here to repeat to fill the bird’s breast.

 

 

 

 

Medieval Mosaic Needlepoint Stitch

Figure 2 Medieval Ground

The gold portion of the wing is done in medieval mosaic stitch which was adapted from an ancient geometric pattern.

 

The background is the Diagonal Mosaic. An easy stitch to do which covers well and quickly, but not so quickly as some I will describe in the later blogs.

 

 

Day 2, Two Turtle Doves

Turtle Doves Christmas Needlepoint

Two Turtle Doves Christmas Needlepoint

This is one of two designs that are vertically symmetrical. Vertical line of the oblong cross separated the two halves. Stitches are worked right to left on the left half of the canvas and left to right on the right half so that each side is mirror of the other.

The bright yellow of the bird is done in four different stitches: Kalem for the outer wing, Continental for the head, Hungarian Ground for the breast, and Slanted Gobelin 2×2 for the tail feathers. The eyes are Continental and the beak, Satin stitch. The gold inner wing is Diagonal Stem (the stitch that I found the most tedious to execute) and the gold tail feathers are the Slanted Govelin 2×2. Leaves are worked as described above. Flowers are Continental. On this block, I used the Continental for the centers of the flower but in other blocks I used French Knots. (Flower centers and bird eyes can also be enhanced with beads and/or sequins.)

Turtle Doves Needlepoint Stitches

Turtle Doves Needlepoint Chart

Needlepoint Heart

Figure 3 Heart Detail

The heart is worked from the center line out. Start with the Oblique Cross and alternate vertical lines of the Continental stitch and Slanted Gobelin 2 x 2. To the left of the center line, stitches slant from left to right and to the right they slant right to left. As shown in the photo, the point of the heart forms a prefect “v” which fits smoothly with the Straight Diagonal.

The Straight Diagonal is worked over 3 canvas threads from top of canvas down. The stitch diagram shows in running from the top right down to the left. It would be reversed for the opposite half.

 

Slanted diagonal Needlepoint Stitch

Figure 4 Slanted Diagonal

Where the continuity large Straight Diagonal is difficult maintain, the background areas around the center line are worked in the Continental stitch, slanted left to right or right to left depending on side. Likewise, flowers are done the same way.

 

 

 

 

Coming next: Day 3 and Day 4 with more feathered friends and the second symmetrical design.

Needlepaint’s 12 Days of Christmas needlepoint canvases were inspired a quilt my mother made 25 years ago. Use the 3-inch circular, 18-point ornaments to decorate a tree or the 6 x 6-inch 18-point blocks to hang as a bunting (8 x 8 inch on 14 mesh). They are an ideal size to be  done while traveling, waiting in a doctor’s office, or babysitting a sleeping grandchild.  Or, in the tradition of a quilting bee, canvases can be done by several different needle-pointers.

I stitched and finished the bunting…….

12 Days of Christmas Needlepoint Kits

12 Days of Christmas Needlepoint Kits

The blocks can be stitched with the continental stitch However, I used a variety of stitches using DMC 6-strand floss.Quick-cover stitches for the backgrounds sped up completion and others I chose to provide texture. (Stitches will be described in subsequent blogs.) Beads, sequins, and/or ribbons could also be added for textures and highlights.

Finishing and display options are numerous…  If one has a large wall space or fireplace, a 12-block bunting would be cool, but it is easier to find a place for a shorter 4-block 3 string display. Also, consider a 2-block 6-string or 3 strings of 3 blocks, 4 blocks, and 5 blocks.

In the photo above, the blocks are framed and backed with red felt, hand-stitched together with 3 strands of red DMC floss to match, and strung on a ¾-inch strip of felt. If you are not into buntings, the blocks could be used to decorate a table or sewn together for wall hanging or table runner. Each could be framed in the Mill Hill Wooden 6 x 6-inch frames which are designed for needlework and available online from several vendors, including  JoAnn or Amazon.

Detailed directions and alternatives for finishing will be addressed in a later blog.

 

At NeedlePaint.com, we love to design Custom Needlepoint projects.  This blog post features amazing custom needlepoint ring bearer pillows and Wedding Needlepoint designs that were recently stitched.

This first custom needlepoint ring bearer pillow we stitched for a customer on Etsy, and was photographed by: Chris Bailey Photography

Custom Monogram Needlepoint Ring Bearer Pillow

Custom Monogram Needlepoint Ring Bearer Pillow

Next are some amazing custom wedding needlepoint projects that were stitched by our customers.  The Chap Lane Inn was stitched by Tish in VA.  Note the bride and grooms names repeating in the background!  The Fleur de Lis and Celtic Cross were needlepointed by Denise in KY.  She uses lots of lovely stitches.

Wedding Family Name Gift Needlepoint

Needlepoint Wedding Gifts

The last two custom wedding needlepoint designs have a fun, modern edge taken from the bride and groom’s wedding invitations.  The Acorn design was stitched by Susan in CT.  I love the beads and mosaic needlepoint stitch in the background!  The modern heart design was stitched by Betsy in SC.  Thanks so much for sharing your pictures!

Modern Wedding Needlepoint

Modern Wedding Needlepoint

If you are looking for a unique wedding gift or the perfect ring bearer pillow for your wedding, please let us know, we’d love to help!  www.NeedlePaint.com

It is spring time again, and we have some fun bright ideas to needlepoint for that special new addition to your family!

I love them all, and we’ll personalize the design with your details when we make your order.  Follow the links here to see them in our shop: Rocket Birth Announcement Needlepoint Canvas, Rubber Duck Baby Needlepoint Kit, Dinosaur Birth Announcement Needlepoint Kit, and the Baby Panda Birth Announcement Needlepoint Canvas.

Custom Baby and Kids Needlepoint Birth Announcement Kits

Custom Baby and Kids Needlepoint Birth Announcement Kits

They are all available as needlepoint kits and can be hung on the wall or can be made into fully stitch needlepoint pillows.

There is one more new design that I love!  The Graphic Baby Announcement Needlepoint Kit for the modern baby’s room.  We’re happy to adjust the colors per your request.

Modern Baby Birth Announcement Needlepoint Kit

Modern Baby Birth Announcement Needlepoint Kit

 

This has been a long time coming.  NeedlePaint is finally offering leather finishing to our needlepointers at a great value.  You mail us your needlepoint project and we’ll turn it into a beautiful belt.

We’re charging $60 to existing customers for needlepoint belt finishing.  We use top grain leather with a solid brass buckle.  Or, if you prefer, we can use a silver buckle. The needlepoint is glued onto the leather for a crisp clean look.

Choose from 3 colors of leather: Tan, Oxblood (our most popular), and Black.

Needlepoint Belt Finishing Service

Needlepoint Belt Finishing

SIZING:
You will need to stitch 1.25 – 1.5 inches high. The area between the leather ends is 8 inches smaller than the final belt size. We need at least 1 inch of extra needlepoint on each side to be covered by the leather. See the image below for how to measure an existing belt to the most worn hole. If you can’t measure, we suggest ordering 3 inches larger than the pant size.

How to Measure a Needlepoint Belt

How to Measure a Needlepoint Belt

It takes us 3-6 weeks to finish a belt.  As always, we offer a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee you’ll love the quality of our work.

If you are looking for a custom designed needlepoint belt canvas, we’d love to help!  Or browse all of our needlepoint belt designs, we have hundreds and are happy to modify and personalize any design.

It is spring time again! Over the winter we’ve collected some wonderful photos that our customers that emailed to us after finishing their projects.  We’ve also collected a lot of reviews from customers and continue to maintain a 5 star rating online!

The fun stuff!  This purple princess crown serving tray was stitched by a wonderful customer in TX.  She goes by Weezie, and is one of those people that when you talk to them, you can feel the warmth coming from their hart.

Princess Crown Custom Needlepoint Serving Tray

She used Kreinik gold #002HL for the crown, and boy does it sparkle!  The purple jewels are needlepointed in Kreinik purple.  The border is Mosaic and Gobelin.  You can see the serving tray in the upper right corner of this image.

Next is another fun custom needlepoint project by Weezie, she must have some lucky recipients!  She emailed us a crest of Argentina and we turned it into a custom needlepoint canvas, she took care of the rest!

Argentina Crest Pillow Custom Needlepoint Kit

Another family heirloom needlepoint to share with you all is from Mary Ann, in PA.  She uploaded her design on NeedlePaint and emailed us the family crest.  We helped make sure the canvas had the needed details, including increasing the size of the family name on the bottom, and voila!  A piece that will be passed on to the next generation of the Price family.

Price Family Crest Custom Needlepoint CanvasIf you’ve been following our blog, you may be able to guess what is coming next.  Some more testimonial reviews from customers we’ve worked with recently.

-I just wanted to let you know that I got the needlepoint kit today.  It looks great! Thanks so much for your help!  Mary – 2017-03-23

-Belt (kit) arrived and it looks great!!!!   Many thanks.   Susan – 2017-03-20

-Needlepoints arrived and they are fantastic!  Started on the squid. The fish will a winter project.  Thanks for all your help. Pennie – 2017-03-16

-Just received my needle pointe.  It looks great… I’ll send pictures when I’m done.  Thanks so much. Carole – 2017-03-08

Looks GREAT!!!  Thanks again, you are the BEST!!!  Denise 2017-03-20

-I received my needlepoint and it is just beautiful.  Marie – 2017-03-02

By Peggy Bond

Geometric designs occur frequently in Pompeii as well was throughout ancient civilizations. Most often they are used as floors and many are black and white. In Pompeii are several polychrome mosaic floor treatments. One was found at the House of Publius Fannius Synistor where it was a threshold in the summer dining area. The mosaic stones were red, green, yellow, and gray on a white and black background. Discovered when the villa was excavated by Vincenzo de Prisco in 1894-5, the mosaic was removed to the excavator’s residence where is resided until acquired by the Archaeological Commission of Pompeii. The NeedlePaint recreation of this mosaic is a 22 x 40 inch 10 point canvas to be worked in Waverly wool and suitable for a rug or wall hanging.

Threshold from the House of Publius Fannius Synistor

Threshold from the House of Publius Fannius Synistor

Pompeii Mosaic Needlepoint Rug Kit

Pompeii Mosaic Needlepoint Rug Kit

Another distinctive geometric polychrome mosaic treatment is found on the columns in the appropriately name House of the Mosaic Columns. The columns are on display in the National Archeological Museum of Naples. The Needlepaint mosaic design is the section of the base of a column and is a 16 x 16 inch 14-point canvas to be worked in DMC threads or 2 stands of Waverly wool, ideal for a colorful pillow.

Column section from the House of the Mosaic Columns

Column section from the House of the Mosaic Columns

Polychrome Mosaic Needlepoint Pillow

Mosaic Column Needlepoint Pillow

These canvases are designed to be stitched using the mosaic stitch and thus much quicker to stitch than using the traditional continental for tent stitches.

By Peggy Bond:

While I walked through ancient Rome and Pompeii, the mosaics on floors, walls, and columns were transformed in my mind to needlepoint pillows, wall hangings, rugs and a myriad of new projects..

Transferring a mosaic design to a canvas had several advantages over the same task for a photo. The number of colors is limited, the design or subject is not too complex, and the background is uniform, except for the grout lines.

Throwing caution to the wind, I attacked the Pompeii guard dog mosaics from the House of Orpheus – 4 colors and a simple image.

Guard dog from the House of Orpheus

Guard dog from the House of Orpheus

The challenge was not creating canvas, but giving the stitched canvas the feel of the mosaic. An individual continental or tent stitch was too small to approximate a mosaic tile, but the mosaic stitch is just as its name suggest. A perfect stitch for the mosaic guard dog!

Mosaic Stitch

Mosaic Stitch

Additionally, the cashmere stitch (a rectangular mosaic) which can be stitched vertically or horizontally could be used to outline the dog as done by the ancient artisans with stone.

Horizontal and Vertical Cashmere Stitch

Horizontal and Vertical Cashmere Stitch

The canvas was designed on a 2 x 2 pixel grid (the size of 1 mosaic) instead of the usual 1 x 1 pixel. Then the number of colors on the image were reduced to 4 – black, off-white, dark brown, and red. There was editing to do to fill most of each grid square with only one color. In some cases, this was not possible and when stitching these areas were filled with the continental stitch.

Close-up of canvas image design

Close-up of canvas image design

As scene in the finished canvas below, I used the cashmere stitch to outline the dog and the leash.

Guard dog from the House of Orpheus Needlepoint Pillow - Finished!

Guard dog from the House of Orpheus Needlepoint Pillow – Finished!

The canvas was 12 point and is worked in Brown Sheep Waverly wool for a16 x 16 inch pillow. This canvas as well as two other Pompeii dogs

Canvases for three other Pompeii dogs are also available.

Cave Canem Needlepoint Canvas

Cavae Canem from the House of the Tragic Poet

Guard Dog from House of Paquius Proculus

Guard Dog from House of Paquius Proculus

Sleeping Dog from the House of Lucius Caecilius Lucundus

Sleeping Dog from the House of Lucius Caecilius Lucundus

Happy New Year!  It has been quite a ride, and finding time to post this year has been hard.  We are taking steps to improve our response time on our custom design and emails.  (Long-time customers may have noticed that it may take up to 48 hours for us reply to an email, and 3-5 business days to finsish a preview).

While this is still faster than any of our competitors that I’m aware of, I really want to keep our customer’s happy and respond quickly to all of our projects.  Emily is taking the role of lead designer now, as she’s shown over the last 9 months that she is a better designer than I am, and really enjoys working on custom projects!  I will still be around to assist with designs, and always available to help answer questions.  This will also free me up to work on new design ideas and projects with Peggy and Karen so I hope 2017 we will WOW you with lots of fun ideas.

This post is about a Custom Bulldog Needlepoint Pillow that we stitched for a Christmas gift.  It was ordered late, so we provided a gift card to the customer (see below) to give on Christmas, and we just shipped it last week.

What I love about this design, is the more modern feeling it has, the zoomed in closeup on the face.  Our customer designed this herself on our website, www.NeedlePaint.com.  You can upload a photo of your dog and see how it would it would look like in needlepoint for Free!

The cool thing to notice in the image below, is that while I think our digital previews on the website look great, the real needlepoint pillow looks much better!

Custom Bulldog Needlepoint Pillow

Custom Bulldog Needlepoint Pillow – The Final pillow up top, and Gift Card sent to customer is below

If you don’t have a great photo of your bulldog, please email us, we’d love to help and can assist editing your own photo upon request.

***Last thing I’d love to post about are some more reviews we recieved over the holidays.  You can see we now have over 100 5 star reviews on our Etsy Shop.

And below are some that were emailed to us over the holiday season.

The U.S.N.A. belt is stunning! My husband was more than thrilled. I appreciate all of the time and effort involved in creating this piece of art.”  Jeanne – 2017-01-24

“With the holidays and craziness I neglected to say thank you again and the belt is fabulous!!! I want to search your site for 2 more son-in-laws.”  Kelly – 2017-01-05

“The piece is truly exquisite. Exactly what I was hoping for. Cannot thank you enough, my brother is going to love it.”  Erika – 2016-12-24

“The guys LOVED their belts, thank you so much! I will send some pictures once I get them back from our photographer. The best man said it was the coolest gift he’s ever received.”  Courtney – 2016-11-22