Updated September 8, 2022.
With so many of the finishing deadlines past, you’re probably like me and so I want to share with you some of my ideas for making quick needlepoint for gifts. I am even stitching an ornament & finishing it as a baby present for a shower on Sunday.
A small needlepoint box or picture frame is fun to do. Two of my favorite sources for these are the Hummingbird House minis from Danji & Evergreen’s can cozy inserts. They are small and come in dozens of designs, so they work for anyone. You can make them as can cozies, box tops, pictures, or ornaments. You can also buy small frames for pictures and use them. Often you can’t find 2″ frames, only 2.5″. In that case, add a border of Diagonal Gobelin around it to make the needlepoint fit.
NPJ is now distributing the Pointe 2 pointe 1″ designs. These go so well in the wonderful shiny accessories of all kinds made by the company. Planet Earth’s wonderful leather key fobs come in lots of colors and have many inserts designed for them. All of these can be stitched and finished in a few hours.
Another fun idea is to make a needlepoint bookmark. You can buy charming blank or painted bookmarks already inset into Ultrasuede. The top is not sewn so you can get to the needlepoint. Then sew the edges to get a lovely finished piece.
Sometimes I have made glass paperweights as Christmas gifts. Yarn Tree makes a nice variety. You don’t need to stitch something fancy; even a geometric pattern or a Bargello design will look great.
The accessories from Lee’s Needle Arts and Planet Earth make lovely gifts (though more expensive). Why not stitch something for one of their small items? I’ve given needlework coin purses, wallets, and credit card cases often as gifts and now my thoughts have been going towards Planet Earth’s glasses cases because everyone I know has at least two pairs of glasses. Since these products have sticky adhesive with them, you can finish them yourself.
Don’t overlook your local stores. With scrapbooking popular, you can often find albums that have openings in the front for photos. Often these can be used to hold needlepoint. But not every album works; you need to have certain characteristics. Look for an album that:
- has an accessible hole (i.e. not covered in paper)
- is thick enough to hold needlepoint
- has a back like a frame or one which could be covered with decorative paper once the needlepoint is inserted
If you can’t find an album that works, you could always scan your needlepoint, make a high-res print and insert that.
In my house, Christmas ornaments are the big thing. Two of my favorite ornament finishes work great for last-minute gifts. I like to use the largest size of Dritz button forms (2.5″ or size 100) to make round ornaments. Make the design, cover the button form with sparkly fabric and then put the needlepoint over it. Patty Paints makes canvases that come with button forms ready-to-go. She also has lots of ideas for how to use these for items besides ornaments.
I’m constantly on the lookout for ornament frames I can use for needlepoint.
Another great finish is to make a diamond ornament. This works with any diamond-shaped needlepoint.
- Make a square around the diamond and cut it out about five canvas threads beyond it.
- Fold that margin and then fold the corners of the square to the back so that they meet in the center.
- Insert your hanger at one of the points.
- Sew the edges of the canvas together on the back.
- Glue on a pretty piece of Ultrasuede or wool felt to cover the unstitched canvas.
So happy stitching!