Since 1997, the American Needlepoint Guild has had what’s probably the best resource for needlepoint on the Internet — their Stitch of the Month (SOTM) program. Every month, except December, visitors to their site would be able to see a new stitch. In December there would be a project using the stitches from that year.
The stitches ranged from the basics, to some quite complex stitches. For the last several years, the stitches and projects have been chosen and designed by some of the top names in needlepoint.
It’s been a tremendous resource and one that was free, extensive, and publicly available. If you wanted to learn needlepoint you could just go there and work your way through. When you needed information or a diagram for a stitch you could check there.
Unhappily earlier this month that resource changed, and not for the good. After several years of work ANG has unveiled a new website, which is great. But in doing so they have put SOTM behind their membership wall. It’s gone. At the moment I’m writing only members will be able to get to the entire program once it is added to the site. Only one selected year will be made available at a time to the public.
I’m very unhappy with this, as are many other needlepointers. Free stitch information along with projects is something that needs to be available to all. When we contrast needlepoint with other needlecrafts what do we see? If I am a knitter or crocheter I can join Ravelry and have access to hundreds of free patterns and stitches. I can track my stash, join groups, and learn to knit or crochet and it costs nothing. If I quilt I have access to dozens of sites with free quilt blocks. Plus all these crafts have YouTube tutorials, blogs, and tutorials on general craft sites.
How will needlepoint grow if no one can find information about us?
The New SOTM
I’m going to rectify this situation by starting a new Stitch of the Month site. I hope to have it up and running sometime in November 2017. It won’t have the 200 or so stitches that were on ANG’s site but it will be a start and it will grow.
What I need from you is your ideas so that it will be a good and useful resource.
- What did you like or not like about the ANG program?
- What would you want to see on a SOTM site?
- How would you use it?
- What needlepoint stitches would you like to see on the SOTM site?
- How could the community of needlepointers help with this?
Just put your ideas in the comments for this post. I want this to be a great resource and one that will be useful to both the community of current needlepointers as well as those who want to learn.
Let me know what you think!