This week’s guest post comes from Needlepoint for Fun and is reprinted with permission.
Sometimes you might come across a needlepoint design that you love, but you may not be inclined to stitch it because there’s not enough “going on” on the canvas – funny sayings might be an example.
Here are a few ideas for spicing up a stitching experience, on a canvas that has only a few colors, or minimal technical details. Canvases like the one above . . .
With a bit of imagination you can turn this. . .
into this . . .
These ideas can be applied to any basic needlepoint canvas:
1. Use Fun Threads.
Velvets, metallics, sparkles, the choice is mind-boggling. Choose an interesting thread to stitch: all the letters; the first letter of each word; a word that you want to make stand out; a motif. Think of how you can incorporate a fun fiber without making the overall stitched design look overloaded. Remember, less is more with most boutique fibers.
2. Use Beads.
In this canvas, Vicky used tiny beads to stitch all the lettering. Some of us (myself included) may not have the patience for this amount of beading, but what about one or two strategically placed beads on the canvas, like a heart in the O?
3. Use a Darning Pattern for the Background.
Whole books have been written about darning patterns, but did you know you can make up your own? Vicky did, with this dog bone darning pattern that she repeated across the background of the canvas. Nothing boring about creating and stitching this!
A darning stitch is just a running stitch repeated in a pattern, row by row. The American Needlepoint Guild explains it nicely and has a page of examples on the website. You could create a pattern for a heart for this canvas, or an ice cream cone for the Did I Eat That? canvas. Endless possibilities if you use your imagination.
4. Use a Different Stitch for the Border.
You could “border” the design using something like a Cashmere Stitch or a Scotch Stitch.
We hope these few ideas for how to approach a basic canvas have inspired you to take a fairly simple design and turn it into a work of art (or something!).
About Janet M Perry
Janet Perry is the Internet's leading authority on needlepoint. She designs, teaches and writes, getting raves from her fans for her innovative techniques, extensive knowledge and generous teaching style. A leading writer of stitch guides, she blogs here and lives on an island in the northeast corner of the SF Bay with her family
Leave a Reply