Stitch Guides

Kelly Clark canvas, copyright Napa Needlepoint

Kelly Clark canvas, copyright Napa Needlepoint

A needlepoint isn’t finished until it is stitched, needlepoint stitch guides help you go from the painted canvas to a finished piece of needle art.

Whenever you pick threads and stitches for your design, you are doing the same thing stitch guide writers do. The difference is that they write it down so that you can replicate their work and add your own stamp to it.

I have a confession, I adore stitch guides and love to write them. Being totally obsessed with needlepoint, I see canvases stitched and my fingers itch to put that into writing.

What is more I see every canvas, no matter how simple, as having interesting problems and opportunities to express ideas in stitches.

How do you make a black bowling ball stand out against a black background? The stitcher wants the letters to be “pouffy,” what thread will do that? Two canvases are the same but for two sons, how do I make them different?

I love the process, but I also know that for many stitchers, it is a difficult one. You may have paid lots of money for a guide which turns out to be mostly Basketweave (why did I spend so much on this?). You may find the guide confusing (how will I ever stitch this?). You may think the stitch doesn’t fit (why can’t I use this big stitch in this tiny space?).

The Needlepoint Stitch Guides section of All about Needlepoint is here to help you. Here you’ll find articles about:

    What Should Be in a Stitch Guide – the parts & their purpose
    Does this Stitch Fit? – picking the right stitches for locations
    A Consumer’s Handbook to Stitch Guides – types of stitch guides
    Why Buy a Stitch Guide? – how to know when you need one
    Parts of a Stitch Guide – What you should find in one
    Deciphering a Stitch Guide – making sense of the guide you bought.

Often when you are stitching a hand painted needlepoint canvas, you come up against a specific problem. There are plenty of articles here that can help you, these include:

If you are looking for customized help for your canvas, please consider using my Needlepoint Stitch Guide Service for full stitch guides or my Quick Stitch Help for help with a few areas on a canvas.

You can also find lots of reasonably priced stitch guides available as PDFs of printed for canvases from many designs at my Stitch Guide site. Each spring I have an on-line about creating your own needlepoint stitch guide (contact me to be added to the mailing list). The class reveals the principles to follow for choosing threads and stitches, while showing, with stitched and unstitched canvases, why these principles work. With this class you’ll be able confidently to stitch any canvas in your stash. A shorter class, Picking the Perfect Canvas, helps you chose canvases you’ll want to stitch.

So sit back, grab some coffee and explore Needlepoint Stitch Guides — a Gateway to Creativity with me.