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NeedlePaint’s Nutcracker Suite Collection

NeedlePaint would like to introduce a series of needlepoint ornament canvases that coordinate with our Nutcracker Suite Stocking canvases. Now you can stitch the beauty of this beautiful ballet, and add some magic to your holiday decor!

One of Tchaikovsky’s most famous compositions, and perhaps one of the most famous ballets in the world; the Nutcracker Suite is a holiday classic. Many families have a holiday tradition that begins with a visit to the local ballet to see the Nutcracker Suite. Of course everyone has their favorite character, and with this collection, you can choose to stitch one canvas or the entire group.

Our Nutcracker Suite Clara ornament canvas (above) and stocking canvas (below) features the main character Clara, dancing with the Nutcracker that she has received as a Christmas gift from her grandfather.

Our Nutcracker Suite Nutcracker Prince ornament canvas (above) and stocking canvas (below), The Nutcracker Prince begins as a young man (prince) named “Hans”, who is transformed into a nutcracker by an army of mice. The only way to break that spell is for the Nutcracker to slay the Mouse King. A battle pursues among the Nutcracker and the Mouse King, but quickly comes to a halt when Clara hits the Mouse King square in the head with her slipper. Ending the conflict, the transformation is made back from Nutcracker to Prince. 

Our Nutcracker Suite Herr Drosselmeyer ornament canvas (above) and stocking canvas (below), continues with this magician-like figure, with cape and eye patch. A character of great mystery and intrigue. In the Nutcracker Suite story, Herr Drosselmeyer is known as Clara’s grandfather (depending on which version of the story you are familiar with, he is sometimes known as Clara’s uncle or godfather). He arrives at the family holiday party with gifts for all, and for Clara he brings a wooden nutcracker in the shape of a little man. 

Our Nutcracker Suite Mouse King ornament canvas (above) and stocking canvas (below), has what every great story needs — a villain! In Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker Suite, the Mouse King plays this part perfectly. When the clock strikes midnight things become alive. The Mouse King corners the beloved Nutcracker and battle pursues. Things quickly come to a halt when Clara throws her slipper at the Mouse King, hitting him square in the head. The Mouse King is taken away by his army of mice thus ending the conflict. 

Our Nutcracker Suite Sugar Plum Fairy ornament canvas (above) and stocking canvas (below), story continues as the Nutcracker turns into a prince and escorts Clara to the Land of Sweets. They are promptly greeted by the Sugar Plum Fairy. After she learns about their daring battle with the Mouse King and his mice, the Sugar Plum Fairy rewards Clara and the Prince with a celebration of dances. 

These strong and complex characters, have been portrayed on our Nutcracker Suite needlepoint ornament and stocking canvases. Wonderful pieces to stitch and be displayed on your fireplace and Christmas tree, as a stand alone or the entire collection.

We would love to help with your needlepoint holiday decorations. Please contact us with any questions that you may have at:

Happy Stitching!

Thinking of a NeedlePaint Christmas!

Written by Peggy Bond

It’s 90 degrees in Maine and my 12 Days of Christmas Ornament are finished. Thought I would hang them on a tree and see if the weather would cooperate. All I got was more sultry weather and some thunder and lighting.

Hanging NeedlePaint Ornaments

Clearly when Christmas comes, these ornaments will make any tree shine.

In finishing the ornaments, I learned a few things that I would like to pass on:

Order all 12 of the hoops at one time so that they will be of the same quality. There is a wide variation in hoops. I had ordered only 2 from Cloud Craft to see if they would work. That was when I was in France. Back in the US, I ordered 10 more the same brand from a different supplier but they were not of the same quality. So, I placed another order with Cloud Craft. The hoops arrived a week later and matched the originals perfectly.


 ½ inch foam makes a perfect padding. It is easy to cut, fits nicely into the hoops, and provides a smooth but firm filling. 

The ornaments are fun to stitch and using background stitches such as the Diagonal Mosaic,  Straight or Slanted Diagonal, or Medieval Mosaic will speed up the stitching.

There is plenty of time to stitch NeedlePaint’s Twelve Days of Christmas Needlepoint Canvas Set before Christmas!

Guitar Needlepoint Belt – Rock and Roll!

We’ve posted before about our Guitar Needlepoint Belt, and the original version has flames, but we’ve also stitched a Preppy Needlepoint version with a navy blue background that also looks great and is perfect to wear around a camp fire or around town.  Not only that, but musicians actually recognize the guitars in the wild.  My friend, (who I made this for) was able to name all but one without any clues!  It has been attached to his hips since he got it.  If you prefer the design without flames, let us know in the notes of your order.

Guitar Needlepoint Belt

Guitar Needlepoint Belt

Guitar Rock and Roll Needlepoint Belt

Guitar Rock and Roll Needlepoint Belt


Custom Needlepoint College Bell Pull

We designed an amazing project for Hallie in VA recently and I am excited to share the story!

She wanted to stitch a needlepoint bell pull that is 38 inches long x 8.5 inches wide, on 18 count canvas.

This is something special for two Oberlin College grads that are married.  It will be a cherished decoration to go in their home and features some campus highlights and sports memories.  If you are interested in how we create a really unique custom needlepoint canvas like this, please read more details about how this design was created below.  First, the photo of the custom needlepoint bell pull canvas!

Custom Needlepoint College Bell Pull Oberlin College

Custom Needlepoint College Bell Pull

Hallie emailed us the names of some buildings, and a lot of very specific details about how to layout the design and where to place the images, (including the drawing below).

Then we reviewed what would work best, including straightening out the photos, so the buildings will look better in needlepoint, and some design ideas for the sports.

Next I found some images online of the buildings she requested, which she picked her favorites and then we got started!  You can see the building images we used for reference below the template, and then the digital preview we sent to her of the design for her approval.

We emailed the preview to her and made a few minor revisions (made the trees in fall colors and adjusted the spacing of the college name so the top can be rolled over a pole).

And Voila!  An amazing project that she loves:  “The bell pull arrived today in perfect condition. It is truly lovely. I will take it with me to my local yarn shop tomorrow to pick my yarns. I will send you a photo when it is done.  Thanks again!!!!”  Hallie – 2016-03-14

I can’t wait to see this when it is complete!

Bell Pull Template

Customer’s Bell Pull Template


Wilder Hall

Wilder Hall Photo

Tappan Square 2

Tappan Square 2

Oberlin Tappan Square

Oberlin Tappan Square


Phys Ed Building

Phys Ed Building

Oberlin College Bell Pull Needlepoint Canvas Preview

Oberlin College Bell Pull Needlepoint Canvas Preview

Vacation Notification and Holiday Cutoff Dates for Orders

Thanks for checking out our blog!

This year our Christmas order deadline for fully stitched needlepoint belts is November 9th. (Hanukkah is Oct. 16th)

For DIY needlepoint kits, the Christmas cutoff is Dec. 11th (Hanukkah is Nov Nov. 27th).

If you are interested in placing an order between Sept 16th and Sept 30th, please read below.  

My wife and family are celebrating the end of her maternity leave (and a happy heathy baby girl!) and taking our family to the beach for two weeks.

Karen (our production manager) will be in the workshop and answering a very limited amount of messages specific to already placed orders. If you are looking to order a stock design and need it soon, please place your order on our website

Custom orders can also be placed and emailed to us while I’m away.  Karen can help get the designs organized and started on the layout.  She can review your order and let you know if their are any questions or details that are missing.

DIY needlepoint canvases typically take 1-2 weeks to design and make an order.  Needlepoint belts ordered during this period will be ready around Thanksgiving.

Thanks you for looking at our shop, I hope to work with you when I return!

Seth Berman

*Here is a peek at our little girl, Callie Jean Berman!



Quick Open-Stitched Custom Needlepoint Belt Kits

Plate 119, The Needlepoint Book

Plate 119, The Needlepoint Book

If Jo Ippolito Christensen can leave backgrounds unstitched as shown in this piece from the 3rd Edition of  The Needlepoint Book, why shouldn’t I? (Click on the image to view the detail of the background. It is only partially stitched and the printed canvas is exposed.)

I was almost there with my Four Hour Needlepoint Ornament but this is one step further. A belt would be my test piece. Many of our Needlepoint belt designs are ideal for this technique. The backgrounds are solid and the images, like the surfboards and sailboats, are colorful and sharp.

Stitching Detail

Stitching Detail

Stitching these two belts went as fast as riding the waves. The only thing one needs to pay attention to is keeping on the thread ends within the stitched areas because the background will be unstitched canvas through which the thread ends will be visible.

Looking closely at the stitched surfboard, you can see that I also look the liberty of slanting the continental in two different direction. The top slants to the left and the bottom to the right, while in the center I used a straight stitch over one canvas thread. (Note: a straight stitch over one thread needs to be worked very loosely, and only works here because it was worked after the top and bottom of the surfboard was completed.) Working the top and bottom of the surfboard with two different slants has the advantage of giving smooth edges to the circle and rounded edges of the design. I used this technique on some of the surfboards and on part of of the sailboats. I was please with my finished canvases!

Quick Stitch Needlepoint Belts

Quick Stitch Needlepoint Belts

A New Bible for Needlepoint

The 3rd edition of Jo Ippolito Christensen’s The Needlepoint Book is out. I hadn’t imagined that this bible of needlepointing could get any better but it has!

Needlepoint Book Cover

Needlepoint Book Cover

The new edition includes expanded discussion of techniques for stitching and design as well as 225 new color plates and over 40 new stitches. I haven’t absorbed even half of the new material, but I have already spotted some new ideas for my next Needlepaint project — open work on belts. (Give me a couple of weeks and I will let you know how it works.)

I have both the print and eBook version and I like them for different reasons. I am a bit of a book snob and I love my paper versions — thus the print. However, I travel a lot and in order to keep my suitcase light, I got the eBook. I am delighted with both. A plus to the eBook is the color plates which can be enlarged on the screen to view details. The plus to the print version is ease of finding and comparing stitches.

And, this is not all that comes with the new edition. There is going to be a stitch app for our mobile devices. It isn’t out yet, but for those who by the print or eBook you need to go to  from your mobile device and enter your  information. Simon & Schuster will notify you with your download code as soon as the app is made available. I can’t wait!

A DIY Crafty Family

I guess you could say that I come from a DIY family. There has always been someone doing some project or another. As a teenager, my father had me grouting tile and my mother had me making all of my own clothes. My siblings were likewise involved, as were my aunts and uncles.

The DIY nature of the family was brought to my attention when I showed my daughter-in-law this picture of the Pansy quilt and rug.

DIY Needlepoint Tapestry

Hand Made by Family Members includes the Pansey Quilt, Pansey Needlepoint Rug, Wood Furniture, Tiffany Lamp, and Bird Embroidery

As I mentioned in my previous post, my sister Mary Sue Suit ( designed and pieced the quilt, Judy Woodworth ( did the quilting, and I made the needlepoint rug using our website The furniture was made by my father at the end of World War II. My Uncle Frank took up leaded glass after he retired in the ‘70s and the Tiffany lamp is one of his.

The embroidered bird hangings were stitched by my great-aunt Mrs. Jo. Mrs. Jo was a nurse who served in France during WWI. She took her lace tatting everywhere with her on the coal-puffing trains of Europe. She complained that all her lace was grey and needed to be washed several time before it could be used. When she retired, nothing pleased her more than a needlepoint or embroidery project. When my mother would take her a new project, Mrs. Jo often would say to her, “Don’t you need to be somewhere else?” The signal that she was ready to be stitching….

Needlepaint a Quilt

After Needlepaint began carrying the Brown Sheep Waverly wool, I decided that I needed to attack a large project — a 20” by 24” rug on 12 point canvas. For design ideas, I turned to my quilting sister, Mary Sue Suit, who never ceases to amaze me with her unique designs based on triangles.

We finally chose her Pansy Quilt which was quilted by Judy Woodworth. Why we chose it, I don’t know, but maybe it had something to do with pansies being one of my favorite flowers and my granddaughter loves purple. Usually Mary Sue gives her quilts names but this one is nameless…. We welcome suggestions.

Pansies Quilt

Pansies Quilt

The straight lines of the triangles meant the quilt design transferred easily to a custom needlepoint canvas.  I worked the canvas with all 3 strands of the Waverly wool and chose one of the variegated colors for the light lavender of the above design. For the backing we used medium-weight wool. The finished rug makes a beautiful accent to the spectacular quilt.  The same pattern could be down sized for an 18 point miniature needlepoint hanging. Or, one could turn the center pansy medallion into a 12 or 14 point pillow. The possibilities are limited only by one’s tolerance for pansies which don’t have to be purple.


Pansy Quilt Rig Color Guide

Pansy Quilt Rig Color Guide


Needlepaint can print canvases up to 36” by 40” and we recommend 10 or 12 point canvas for rugs. I chose 12 point canvas because I wanted the finished rug to be firm without having to use a heavy backing or filler.

Needlepoint Rug and Quilt

Needlepoint Rug and Quilt

Custom Kippah Yarlmulke Needlepoint Canvases

Have you been looking for the perfect yarlmulke needlepoint canvas, but not been able to find it?  Why not have something custom designed just for you?

A Custom Kippah Needlepoint Canvas by NeedlePaint includes up to 4 designs and a monogram.  If you have something different in mind, we’d be happy to help design that, too!

Email us your design ideas and we will review them.  We will be in touch with any questions and will have a digital proof of your needlepoint canvas ready within 5 business days.

Here is a project recently finished for a grand child, nice stitching Rachael!

Custom Needlepoint Kippah

Custom Needlepoint Kippah

Below is the template on our website.  Please keep in mind that your kippah needlepoint canvas will be custom designed and a digital proof emailed to you for approval.

Custom Kippah Needlepoint Canvas

Custom Kippah Needlepoint Canvas

There are two sizes, a 6.5 inch and a 7 inch.   We can do designs on 14 or 18 mesh canvas.

Below are the Star of David Kippah Needlepoint Kit and the Plaid Yarmulke Needlepoint Canvas.  Both can per personaized with a monogram and also add a date for a special occasion.  Think wedding or bar / bat mitzvah.  Colors can also be customized.

Star of David Kippah Needlepoint Kit

Star of David Kippah Needlepoint Kit 6.5 inch on 18 mesh canvas

Plaid Personalized Yarmulke Needlepoint Canvas

Plaid Personalized Yarmulke Needlepoint Canvas 7 inch on 18 mesh canvas