Finish Standing Needlepoint

June 8, 2016Finishing Standard

One popular way of finishing needlepoint is to make it into a standing objects. Standing needlepoint can be made in any shape or size. They can be small or large, used as needlepoint Christmas ornaments or can stand on tables or floors as decoration. They can even be doorstops. All are made the same way.

Begin by stitching around the edge of the stitched area with a zigzag stitch to help stabilize the fabric. Now trim the margin of the canvas to about a 3/4″.

Putting right sides together, pin the needlepoint to the backing fabric. If you are making a hanging ornament, pin a loop of fabric between the needlepoint and the backing at the point to make a hanger.

Ultrasuede is an excellent choice for finishing needlepoint because it doesn’t ravel or stretch. For these kind of objects, your backing should be fairly heavy. Sew around the margin of the needlework and trim seams to match.

If your object is curved, clip the seam allowance to make it fit to the curve better and turn the right side out. Now stuff most of the object with fiberfill. It should be puffy and firmly stuffed.

You need to weight the bottom of the object in order for it to stand up. There are many things which could be used for this. Fabric stores carry plastic pellets which are used to make bean bags. BB’s for BB guns could also be used.

I chose to use pie weights which are little ceramic balls from England. I used a medium handful and tied them in a scrap of fabric. DO NOT use beans, rice or other food, they can attract insects.

Put the weight, tie side up in the bottom of the object.

Now you need to sew on the base. I used another piece of Ultrasuede for this. Cut it into a melon shape tapering to points at the ends. If you want a stiff bottom, use this as a pattern to cut a bottom from a heavy piece of cardboard. Place the cardboard inside the stuffed needlepoint.

Pin to one side of the bottom to of the object, right sides together, and hand-sew with a running stitch. Now pin to the other side and blind stitch the side closed.

You may find that you need to settle the object to make it stand straight because the weights are uneven (that’s why I used the pie weights).

This is a flexible method of finishing needlepoint. It will work for everything from a small Christmas ornament to a standing fgure 4 feet tall.