Updated January 18, 2019
Often I’m frustrated and a little jealous. As a needlepointer there are so many charts out there for cross stitchers. They’re free and often quite beautiful. But also, alas, often not adaptable to needlepoint.
Take heart! This isn’t always the case. If you know what makes a good chart to adapt, you’ll find lots of inspiration for free on the Web.
Most importantly, look for charts that have whole stitches only. The partial stitches that make curves in cross stitch can’t be done on needlepoint canvas. Also look for charts that have a minimum of backstitching, especially for important design elements. While you can Backstitch on needlepoint canvas, it’s hard to adapt and many charts like this won’t work well.
Often in cross stitch charts Backstitch is used to outline areas. This is not needed in needlepoint because needlepoint stitches themselves have enough texture to make outlines unnecessary, unless you like the look.
The best charts to adapt are those that have large blocks of color that are outlined. These, once outlines or counted, can be done in a textured stitch.If you are planning on stitching using Tent, look for large areas, with or without outlines. If you’re good with counting, I’m not, you can use charts without outlines and textured stitches.
This free rose chart from Cross Me Not is a perfect example of this. Stitch the outlines of the petal and leaf, then the darkest part of the rose, all in Tent Stitch.
Then, using an hand-dyed or overdyed thread in a lovely rose color, find a textured stitch (there’s lots of articles with these in this blog) and stitch the rest of the petals. Pick another stitch and a matte thread for the leaves.
There’s plenty of inspiration for the needlepointer in the dozens of free cross stitch charts on the Internet.